WASHINGTON — The White House announced parting protections for the northern reaches of Alaska's lands and waters on Friday, closing off more than 40,000 square miles of Bering Strait-area waters to future oil leases and requiring the federal government to set up a system for increasing the input of Native people.
SHAKTOOLIK, Alaska — In the dream, a storm came and Betsy Bekoalok watched the river rise on one side of the village and the ocean on the other, the water swallowing up the brightly colored houses, the fishing boats and the four-wheelers, the school and the clinic.
She dived into the floodwaters, frantically searching for her son. Bodies drifted past her in the half-darkness. When she finally found the boy, he, too, was lifeless.
“I picked him up and brought him back from the ocean’s bottom,” Ms. Bekoalok remembered.
The Inupiat people who for centuries have hunted and fished on Alaska’s western coast believe that some dreams are portents of things to come.
But here in Shaktoolik, one need not be a prophet to predict flooding, especially during the fall storms.
Superstorms, drought and changes in the growing season are just a few of the issues driving a new kind of conversation about climate change. This conversation is being had by neighbors, health providers, urban planners and local leaders, even the president of the United States, about how – not whether – to take action.
The 8 guiding principles for using the preparation frame.
From the report's Foreword:
Experience shows that when paired with traditional infrastructure, natural infrastructure—wetlands and forests—can reduce water management costs and deliver other cultural and economic benefits coveted by twenty-first century communities, like recreational green spaces and fish and wildlife habitats. For many communities, the biggest challenge to adopting these green approaches is understanding how to finance and implement them. Fortunately, a handful of projects across the country offers helpful insights to landowners and managers, utilities, and community groups.
A growing body of literature examines the vulnerability, risk, resilience, and adaptation of indigenous peoples to climate change. This synthesis of literature brings together research pertaining to the impacts of climate change on sovereignty, culture, health, and economies that are currently being experienced by Alaska Native and American Indian tribes and other indigenous communities in the United States. The knowledge and science of how climate change impacts are affecting indigenous peoples contributes to the development of policies, plans, and programs for adapting to climate change and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. This report defines and describes the key frameworks that inform indigenous understandings of climate change impacts and pathways for adaptation and mitigation, namely, tribal sovereignty and self-determination, culture and cultural identity, and indigenous community health indicators. It also provides a comprehensive synthesis of climate knowledge, science, and strategies that indigenous communities are exploring, as well as an understanding of the gaps in research on these issues. This literature synthesis is intended to make a contribution to future efforts such as the 4th National Climate Assessment, while serving as a resource for future research, tribal and agency climate initiatives, and policy development.
“The Puyallup people are a river people, we are a salmon people. The loss of salmon because of climate change and the temperatures rising in the rivers and the loss of habitat along the river banks really does impact us as Puyallup people.” Annette Bryan Puyallup Tribe
“Our environment was rich in the wealth of natural resources, providing all our needs, allowing us to live healthy happy lives!”
This website has been developed by the UNESCO Institute for Information Technologies in Education within a project “A Networked System of Open Indigenous Knowledge Resources for Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation in Polar Regions” funded by the UNESCO Intersectoral Platform “UNESCO’s contribution to climate change mitigation and adaptation”. It contains multimedia modules with interdisciplinary complex of indigenous knowledge related to mitigation and adaptation to environmental changes in the regions that have similar climate and face similar environmental problems in the Far North of Russia. 2016.
In June 2009, Ecology and Reclamation brought representatives from the Yakama Nation, irrigation districts, environmental organizations, and federal, state, county, and city governments together to form the Yakima River Basin Water Enhancement Project (YRBWEP) Working Group to help develop a consensus-based solution to the basin’s water problems. Over the next 18 months, the group developed the Yakima River Basin Integrated Water Resource Management Plan (Plan). Ecology and Reclamation issued a Programmatic Environmental Impact (PEIS) for the Plan March 2, 2012. The PEIS serves as a framework for the plan. Individual projects will each receive a more specific environmental review.