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Cultural Survival Is Headed to COP28!

From November 30, 2023 – December 12, 2023, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Conference of Parties (COP28) is happening in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. 

Indigenous representation is essential in moving world leaders to take immediate action on climate change, and that is why members of our team will be attending to join the Indigenous Peoples' Caucus and other Indigenous and allied leaders in pushing policy makers for urgent and holistic responses to climate chaos. Proactive efforts to center, resource, and respect Indigenous rights, leadership, and stewardship must be prioritized in all layers of decision-making as we collectively engage to combat climate change.

Cultural Survival's in-person delegation includes Galina Angarova (Buryat), Executive Director; Shaldon Ferris (Khoisan), Indigenous Rights Radio Coordinator; Bryan Bixcul (Maya Tz'utujil), Executive Coordinator; Dev Kumar Sunuwar (Koĩts-Sunuwar), Community Media Program Coordinator; Polina Shulbaeva (Selkup), Consultant; and Lesley Muñoz Rivera (Colla), Board member in her community; Steering Committee Member, SIRGE Coalition.

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter/X, Instagram, and Threads as we share Indigenous voices from the ground and report on key actions and takeaways from COP28. 

Indigenous Voices on Advocating for Indigenous Rights, a Just Transition, and Mitigating the Impacts of Climate Change

Read: The Road to COP28: The World Is Not on Track to Achieve the Goals of the Paris Agreement

Read: The Quest for Green Energy Filled My Community with Violence

Read: Love of Place Over Lithium: Learning, Connecting, and Valuing Noongar Country 

Read: The World’s Quest for a Green Transition Is Causing a New Wave of Extractivism in Indigenous Territories

Read: Maya Peoples’ Territorial Governance and Vulnerability in Climate Change Policy and Action

Listen: Holding the Fire: Episode 4. Understanding Suffering and Knowing Our Place with Galina Angarova

Read: Despite Historic Participation, Indigenous Peoples Are Again Sidelined In Major Decisions At COP27

Read: 47-1 We are the Voice of Nature

Read: How Indigenous Peoples Are Adapting to and Mitigating the Impacts of Climate Change


Statement towards Discontinuing the Use of the Collective Term “Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities” or “IPLC”

Cultural Survival and First Peoples Worldwide consider it necessary to address a growing international position that combines and equates Indigenous Peoples–and in particular, their affirmed rights to lands and territories and Free, Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC)–with local communities within the term “Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities” or “IPLC.” The combination of these two different entities disregards the collective rights to which Indigenous Peoples are entitled as distinct, self-determining Peoples. Read more. En español.


Cultural Survival Events at COP28


Securing Indigenous Peoples' Rights in the Green Economy: Learning from Past Mistakes

December 5, 2023
9:00 am - 11:00 am UAE/ 12:00 am EST
Higher Education Pavilion,  Blue Zone

Organized by Cultural Survival, First Peoples Worldwide, Batani Foundation, Earthworks, and Society for Threatened Peoples, who compose the global, Indigenous-led Securing Indigenous Peoples’ Rights in the Green Economy (SIRGE) Coalition, hosted by the George Washington University with support from the National Science Foundation, this panel brings together leaders on the frontlines of defending Indigenous Peoples’ right to Free, Prior, and Informed Consent as they face an increase in transition mineral extraction. Indigenous leaders will discuss how an increase in mining for transition minerals puts Indigenous Peoples’ and all people’s rights at risk. It will map the global landscape of transition mineral development and share pathways towards a just transition, grounded in a rights-based approach, that protects the rights of Indigenous Peoples.

Vera Kuklina - Research Professor, Department of Geography, The George Washington University
Pasang Dolma Sherpa (Sherpa) - Executive Director of Center for Indigenous Peoples' Research & Development (CIPRED) - moderator
Galina Angarova (Buryat) - Executive Director, Cultural Survival; Chair of the Executive Committee, SIRGE Coalition
Rodion Sulyandziga (Udege) - Director of the Center for Support of Indigenous Peoples of the North (CSIPN) (to be confirmed) 
Lesley Muñoz (Colla) - Board member, Indigenous community of Copiapo; Steering Committee Member, SIRGE Coalition
Gideon Sanago (Maasai) - Steering Committee Member, SIRGE Coalition 



Securing Indigenous Peoples' Rights, including Land Rights in the Transition to a Green Economy

December 5, 2023
5:00 pm - 6:00 pm UAE / 8:00 am EST
Indigenous Peoples’ Pavillion
Co-hosted by: Cultural Survival, SIRGE Coalition, International Land Coalition, Indigenous Peoples Platform (IPRI), and Fundación Plurales.
Livestream at:

One of the main calls to action espoused at COP28 in Dubai this year will be to fast-track the energy transition. At the heart of the energy transition lies a central problem: the massive quantities of minerals like lithium, copper, cobalt, and nickel being extracted to power new technologies. Even more concerning is where those minerals are being mined and how. Recent data reveals a stark reality: Globally, 54% of mining projects involving approximately 30 minerals crucial for the production of renewable energy systems and technologies are located on or near Indigenous lands and territories; in Africa, that number is over 75%. The extraction of raw materials for renewable energy technologies often leads to land grabs, habitat destruction, and pollution that fuel disputes over land ownership and drive the evictions of communities and the destruction of their sustainable livelihoods,  especially those of Indigenous Peoples. The emerging land and territorial conflicts come therefore as no surprise. Recent examples of such conflicts include the ongoing conflicts in lithium-rich Jujuy, Argentina, and neighboring Chile. 

Galina Angarova (Buryat) - Executive Director, Cultural Survival; Chair of the Executive Committee, SIRGE Coalition
Gideon Sanago (Maasai) - Coordinator for Climate Change, Pastoralists Indigenous Non Governmental Organizations (PINGO’s Forum); Steering Committee Member, SIRGE Coalition
Lesley Muñoz ( Colla) - Board member, Indigenous Community of Copiapo; Steering Committee Member, SIRGE Coalition
Lilian Gregorio - Project Manager of Fundación Plurales, Argentina 
Joan Carling (Kankanaey) - Executive Director, Indigenous Peoples Rights International (IPRI)

Moderator: Dev Kumar Sunuwar (Koits-Sunuwar) - Community Media Program Coordinator, Cultural Survival; Board of Trustees, UN Voluntary Fund for Indigenous Peoples



Climate Financing: How Can the New Loss and Damage Fund Effectively Support Indigenous Climate Solutions?

December 6, 2023
1:30 pm - 2:30 pm UAE/ 4:30 am EST
Indigenous Peoples’ Pavilion
Co-hosted by: Cultural Survival and AIDESEP
Language: English, Spanish, French
Livestream at:

Last year at COP27, we saw the establishment of the new Loss and Damage Fund. While this is one of the most consequential climate decisions since the Paris Agreement, we are yet to see whether this new financial mechanism will actually reach Indigenous communities on the frontlines of climate change impacts. Current experience tells us that very little of the money committed to fighting climate change has reached Indigenous Peoples and local communities. A recent progress report says that only 7% of funds from the $1.7 billion pledge made in Glasgow have gone directly to Indigenous Peoples and local communities. As the Transitional Committee established to provide recommendations is drafting proposals for the management of this new fund for consideration and adoption at COP28, it is necessary to reflect on what a successful Loss and Damage Fund looks like for Indigenous Peoples. Increased direct funding via Indigenous-led or Indigenous-governed mechanisms and organizations is crucial to support Indigenous climate solutions and make climate financing efforts effective. Just as important we will discuss how Indigenous-led and Indigenous-governed funds are different from other funds and can support Indigenous-led climate solutions better. 

Galina Angarova (Buryat) - Executive Director, Cultural Survival
Helen Magata (Kadaklan) - Communications Officer, Tebtebba Foundation; Indigenous Peoples Coordinator, Green Climate Fund
Elaine Shajian (Awajun) - President of the Regional Coordinator of Indigenous Peoples of San Lorenzo (CORPI-SL)
Jorge Perez Rubio (Murui-Muinane) - President of AIDESEP

Moderator: Dev Kumar Sunuwar (Koits-Sunuwar) - Community Media Program Coordinator, Cultural Survival; Board of Trustees, UN Voluntary Fund for Indigenous Peoples 



Leveraging the Power of Indigenous Peoples' Right to Self-determination and FPIC in Climate-Related Work: When False Climate Solutions Violate Indigenous Rights

December 8, 2023
1:30 pm - 2:30 pm UAE/ 4:30 am EST
Indigenous Peoples’ Pavilion
Language: English, Spanish, French 
Livestream at:

Nature-based and net-zero solutions are again at the forefront of solutions offered by governments and businesses to deal with the climate crisis. These solutions include the creation of carbon market schemes and green energy production projects. We all know that nature-based solutions and net-zero solutions are false solutions because they fail to address emissions reductions at source; instead, they permit the destruction of ecosystems in one place for the promise of restoring ecosystems in another place. There are many documented cases of so-called climate solutions infringing on the rights of Indigenous Peoples. 

Cultural Survival and partners developed an FPIC guide to support Indigenous Peoples' right to self-determination worldwide. As we continue to witness an onslaught of violations of Indigenous territories in the name of conservation, the just transition, and extractive industries, exercising the right to Free, Prior and Informed Consent remains one of the most powerful tools to protect the rights of Indigenous Peoples. At this session, Indigenous leaders will share experiences of violations of Indigenous rights and will present a new FPIC guidebook to support Indigenous Peoples' self-determination. 


Other Events where CS staff will be speaking

Funding the Future – Investing in Indigenous Women to Lead the Climate Solutions
December 2, 2023
15:50-16:50 UAE
Indigenous Pavilion
Organizer: IFIP
CS speaker: Galina Angarova 
Livestream at:


Western academia and nomadic cultures collaboration to address climate change 
December 2, 2023 
4:00 - 6:00 PM UAE
Higher Education Pavilion, Blue Zone 
Host: George Washington University with support from the National Science Foundation 
CS speaker: Galina Angarova

Allyship YOUNGA workshop
December 8, 2023
3:30 - 4:30 PM UAE
Entertainment and Culture Pavillion in the Blue Zone 
Organizer: The Human Impacts Institute 
CS Speaker: Bryan Bixcul 


Indigenizing Education for Climate Action: Strategies, Case Studies, and Testimonies
December 9, 2023
3:45-4:45 PM UAE
Greening Education Pavilion, Green Zone
Organizer: Space4Innovation, GEO Indigenous Alliance
CS Speaker: Galina Angarova