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Biocultural diversity conserved by indigenous peoples: examples and analysis

Indigenous conservation territories and areas conserved by indigenous peoples and local communities– ICCAs for short– are the subject of this Briefing sponsored by IIED, IUCN CEESP and other organizations.

ICCAs are defined as “natural and/or modified ecosystems, containing significant biodiversity values, ecological benefits and cultural values, voluntarily conserved by indigenous peoples and local communities, both sedentary and mobile, through customary laws or other effective means”

ICCAs include cases of continuation, revival or modification of traditional practices, some of which are of ancient origin, as well as new initiatives, such as restoration and innovative uses of resources taken up by indigenous peoples and local communities in the face of new threats or opportunities. In these humanized ecosystems high levels of agricultural biodiversity typically coexist with managed ‘wild’ biodiversity.

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