The Tenure Facility works directly with Indigenous Peoples and local communities and their allies to ensure laws on community rights are translated into rights recognition on the ground. It supports them to achieve formal legal recognition of their territorial rights on maps, in laws, and in the plans and operations of governments and private investors. We work strategically with local, national, and international stakeholders to foster community-level partnership and joint action with governments and the private sector.
The Tenure Facility generally operates within, or seeks to improve, existing government structures to ensure communities can assert their rights to the land they have maintained for generations. We aim to invest at least US$10 million a year for the first 10 years. Projections suggest that this investment would increase titled, protected, and well-managed community and indigenous tropical forest land by 42 to 91 million hectares. This increase in tenure security would help to prevent about 1 to 2.5 million hectares of deforestation and mitigate climate change by avoiding emission of 0.5 to 1.3 gigatons of carbon dioxide equivalent.
The Tenure Facility aims to achieve two outcomes: 1) The land and forest rights of Indigenous Peoples and local communities are made more secure by governments in targeted developing countries; and 2) Practical approaches for implementing land and forest tenure reforms are shared and leveraged by practitioners and stakeholders to enable greater support and investment in securing the land rights of Indigenous Peoples and local communities.
By the end of 2020, Tenure Facility ´s partners had achieved the titling of over 4.4 million hectares of land and forests, and were on track to document and verify evidence-based claims for up to 9.8 million hectares, altogether advancing collective tenure security over more than 14.2 million hectares. In addition, our partners had strengthened protection of over 2.4 million hectares of forest categorised as a reserve for Indigenous Peoples living in voluntary isolation or initial contact in Peru, and protection against encroachment of over 1.3 million hectares in Panama. All areas combined, Tenure Facility-backed projects are supporting approximately 7.2 million people.
In addition, they have tested new approaches to securing community tenure rights with governments, demonstrated cost-effective methods for securing tenure at scale, and shown how securing tenure can reduce conflict—setting the stage for peace and prosperity.
This Annual Report captures some of the innovative work the Tenure Facility’s partners are doing. It is full of inspiring stories from communities who are courageously and creatively defending and strengthening their communal land rights, and have done so in 2020 amidst uniquely challenging circumstances.
Our 2019 Annual Report offers you a glimpse into our partners’ efforts to secure their territories. Whilst the destination is the same, the journey to secure tenure varies enormously depending on country and local contexts.
In this first annual report, we explore how our partners are working with governments to transform international and national commitments, policies, and laws into clear legal recognition of indigenous lands and forests. And we will share stories of their leadership, strategies, achievements, learning, and innovation.