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Findings of the First Inclusive Climate Governance Forum

Opinion and public participation in Latin America

Authors: Daniela Stevens y MK Vereen

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Climate policy decisions in Latin America are usually concentrated in the hands of public decision-makers, with input and influence from the private sector. Rarely have civil society organizations (CSOs) or structurally vulnerable populations had the opportunity to access the debates that will be decisive for their future. Often, consultations or roundtables between government and various civil society stakeholders lack implementable outcomes and rarely require follow-up. Barriers such as lack of communication channels, marginalization of certain groups, disinterest on both sides, or a deep distrust of government stand in the way. The absence of communication channels between state and society causes governments to overlook proposals and needs that could improve climate governance. Worse, this results in the loss of a potential counterweight whose independent participation could serve as an accountability mechanism when climate commitments fail to materialize or measures do not meet the standards set by governments themselves.

In order to explore these issues, the Inter-American Dialogue and the EKLA Regional Program of the Konrad Adenauer Foundation held the First Forum on Inclusive Climate Governance on June 8, 2023. They convened diverse panelists from across the region to discuss these issues in three roundtables and suggest best practices and policy recommendations. The forum, available on YouTube, was advertised throughout the region and conducted in Spanish with simultaneous translation into Portuguese to facilitate broad regional participation.

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