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Seminar invitation: Is Climate Change Destroying Indigenous Peoples?

Date: 30th October 2015 at 12.00-16.00
Venue: Eurooppasali, Malminkatu 16, Helsinki

Climate change threatens firstly people who are most closely dependent on natural resources as a source of their living. Many indigenous peoples have faced situations like this. Indigenous peoples in different countries face very different challenges, but background variables of the climate change are often the same.

The seminar explores how indigenous peoples around the world confront the threat caused by climate change. What do indigenous peoples in African countries do, what about northern Sami people? How does climate change affect to their pastoral way of living? The seminar also focuses on the role of Finland in fighting against climate change and protecting the rights of indigenous peoples. Special attention will be given to the question, on how climate sustainability and indigenous peoples are taken into account in Finland’s development co-operation.

Keynote speaker of the seminar is Mrs. Agnes Leina, Regional Coordinator of the Indigenous Peoples of Africa Co-ordinating Committee, IPACC. IPACC is an umbrella organisation of indigenous peoples’ NGOs in Africa, representing African indigenous peoples also in international climate negotiations. Other speakers are Vice-Chairman of the City Sami Community Juho Keva, MEP Heidi Hautala and Human Rights Ambassador Rauno Merisaari. The language of the seminar is English.

The seminar is organised by the Green Educational Centre Visio together with the Green League, Siemenpuu Foundation and MEP Heidi Hautala.


12.00 Light lunch

12.30 Welcoming words, Marko Ulvila, Chairman of Siemenpuu Foundation

12.40 African indigenous peoples facing climate change – What can be expected from Paris?
Agnes Leina, Executive Director, Illaramatak Community Concerns, and Regional Coordinator of Indigenous Peoples of Africa Co-ordinating Committee IPACC

Arctic indegenous people and climate change
Juho Keva, Vice-Chairman of the City Sami Community

Finland as a part of EU’s climate policy: what is the role of indigenous peoples?
Heidi Hautala, Member of the European Parliament (Greens/EFA)

14.00-14.30 Coffee break

14.30 What is the role of climate change and indigenous peoples in Finland’s development co-operation?
Rauno Merisaari, Human Rights Ambassador, Ministry for Foreign Affairs

14.50 Panel discussion: How to prevent climate change from destroying indigenous peoples?

16.00 Closing of the seminar

Registration: Registraton should be made before Wednesday 28th October at 14:00 by e-mail: taru.anttonen (at)