Alaska, Canada, & the Artic

The Alaska Native Knowledge Network (ANKN) website provides documentation related to the ways in which Native people acquire and utilize knowledge related to the ecological system in which they are situated.

 

The Alaska Native Science Commission (ANSC) supports scientific research that enhances and perpetuates Alaska Native cultures and ensures the protection of indigenous cultures and intellectual property. The site offers guidelines for conduct of ethical research, sample agreements, community resource directories, and a section on climate change. One project of the ANSC is the Alaska Traditional Knowledge and Native Foods Database, a searchable database designed to document the observations of Alaska Native communities, including research-based knowledge of environmental changes. 

 

The Alaska Sea Otter and Stellar Sea Lion Commission(TASSC) aims to ensure and further Alaska Natives' role in sea otter and steller sea lion conservation, management, research, education, and artistic development.

 

The Aleut International Association (AIA) was formed in 1998, resulting in the first formal organization of Aleut people in over 178 years. The purpose of the organization is to protect the natural resources and the environment of the region surrounding the Aleut homelands, which is threatened today by the impact of the Russian economy, pollution, climate change and the commercial fishing fleets of several nations. Formation of the AIA represents the first effort by Aleuts on both sides of the Bering Sea to cooperate on the mutual goal of protecting natural resources vital for the continuation of the Aleut way of life.

The Arctic Athabaskan Council (AAC) is an international treaty organization established to represent the interests ofUnited States and Canadian Athabaskan member First Nation governments in Arctic Council forums, and to foster a greater understanding of the common heritage of all Athabaskan peoples of Arctic North America.

 

The Arctic Borderlands Ecological Knowledge Co-opmonitors and assesses change in the range of the Porcupine Caribou Herd and extending to the Mackenzie Delta.

 

The Arctic Climate Impact Assessment (ACIA) is an international project of the Arctic Council and the International Arctic Science Committee (IASC), established to evaluate and synthesize knowledge on climate variability, climate change, and increased ultraviolet radiation and their consequences. The results of the assessment were released at the ACIA International Scientific Symposium held in Reykjavik, Icelandin November 2004.

 

The Arctic Council is a high-level intergovernmental forum that provides a mechanism to address the common concerns and challenges faced by the Arctic governments and the people of the Arctic. The Council is a unique forum for co-operation between national governments and indigenous peoples. Six international organizations representing many Arctic indigenous communities have the status of permanent participants of the Arctic Council and are involved in the work of the Council in full consultation with governments.

 

The Arctic Network for the Support of the Indigenous Peoples of the Russian Arctic (ANSIPRA) is a communication network linking Russian Indigenous Peoples' Organizations (IPOs) with international institutions and organizations alarmed about the future of the indigenous peoples of the Russian North. ANSIPRA's main goal is to spread information and to mediate contacts, but will also assist in project coordination and applications for funding.

 

The Assembly of First Nations (AFN) is a Canadian aboriginal lobby organization designed to present the views of the various First Nations through their leaders in areas such as: Aboriginal and Treaty Rights, Economic Development, Education, Languages and Literacy, Health, Housing, Social Development, Justice, Taxation, Land Claims, and the Environment.

 

The Canadian Arctic Resources Committee (CARC) is a citizens' organization dedicated to the long-term environmental and social well being of northern Canada and its peoples. The CARC believes in sustainable development and the application of the precautionary principle; policy and advocacy work is grounded in solid scientific and socio-economic research and experience.

 

The Canadian Boreal Initiative (CBI) is an independent organization working with conservationists, First Nations, industry and others to link science, policy and conservation activities in Canada's boreal region.

 

The Dene Nation has a Lands and Environment Division which supports all five Dene regions on a number of national and international initiatives including forestry and land management issues such as the environmental assessment of diamond exploration around Drybones Bay, licensing of DeBeers diamond mine, pipeline development along the Deh cho, and other projects.

 

The Grand Council of the Cree was formed in 1974 during the negotiations between the Eeyouch and the Quebec and Canadian governments about their rights in the face of the James Bay I Hydroelectric Project. The Grand Council was set up at a council of Cree leaders as a means to conduct relations with the outside world. Since the signing of the 1975James Bay and Northern Quebec Agreement, they have paired the political arm, the Grand Council, with the Cree Regional Authority that serves as an administrative arm for providing services to the Cree communities and for environmental protection.


The Gwich'in Steering Committee was formed in 1988 in response to the efforts by the Reagan administration to open the coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to leasing for oil. Recognizing that this threat to the caribou calving grounds was a threat to the very heart of the Gwich'in, the elders called upon the chiefs of all villages from Canada toAlaska to gather in Arctic Village for the first in over a century.

The International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) ofCanada funds several programs (including Community Adaptation and Sustainable Livelihoods) that help local people work within the sustainable livelihoods framework, so that they can define their own future. The tools help communities create a vision of the future based on their strengths, which they then communicate to decision-makers; another project features Inuit Observations on Climate Change.

 

The Inuit Circumpolar Confernece (ICC) is an international organization that represents the Inuit people of the Arctic. The ICC is comprised of members from Alaska, Canada, Greenland, and Chukotka (Russia). The ICC seeks to strengthen, protect, and develop Inuit rights and the circumpolar regions.

 

The Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami (ITK) is the national Inuit organization inCanada, representing four Inuit regions – Nunatsiavut (Labrador), Nunavik (northern Quebec), Nunavut, and the Inuvialuit region in the Northwest Territories – that has adopted a mandate on traditional ecological knowledge(TEK).

 

The National Aboriginal Forestry Association (NAFA) promotes and supports increased Aboriginal involvement in forest management and related commercial opportunities in Canada, while staying committed to holistic or multiple-use forestry, to build sustainable Aboriginal communities to serve a multitude of community needs, among those being the protection of wildlife and traditional food stuff habitat, protection of fur bearers, protection of clean and adequate supplies of water, establishment of forested areas for recreation and tourism attractions, traditional cultural and spiritual use, as well as the production of fiber for timber, pulp and paper and other wood by-products.

 

The Native Women's Association of Canada (NWAC) was founded on the collective goal to enhance, promote, and foster the social, economic, cultural and political wellbeing of First Nations and Métis women within First Nation and Canadian societies. Much like a "Grandmother's Lodge", aunties, mothers, sisters, brothers and relatives collectively recognize, respect, promote, defend and enhance Native ancestral laws, spiritual beliefs, language and traditions.

 

The Nisga'a Peoples “have held the land of the Nass River in sacred trust from God since time immemorial. All Nisga'a culture and identify is woven inextricably into this Land. This is the story of their struggle to have this reality acknowledged by others and so have a meaningful and God given place in Canada."

 

REDZONE is the website of the Eyak Preservation Council whose mission is to protect the inherent rights of culture, heritage, language and ancestral lands needed to preserve and restore the Eyak tribe's continued existence as an independently recognized Alaska tribal nation.

 

The Russian Association of Indigenous Peoples of the North(RAIPON) was established by the first Congress of Indigenous Peoples of the North, Siberia, and Far East, held in Moscow in 1990. RAIPON is an NGO formed on territorial and territorial-ethnic principles and comprising thirty regional ethnic associations of indigenous peoples of the North. Its main purpose is to protect the interests and lawful rights of the peoples it represents, including their right to land, natural resources, and self-government in accordance with international standards and Russian legislation, and their right to resolve their own social and economic problems. RAIPON also provides assistance in cultural development and education, promotes international exchange and co-operation, and organizes humanitarian aid.

 

The Saami Council is an NGO with member organizations inFinland, Russia, Norway and Sweden. Since its foundation in 1956, the Council has actively dealt with the promotion of Saami rights and interests in the four countries where the Saami are living, to consolidate the feeling of affinity among the Saami people, to attain recognition for the Saami as a nation and to maintain the economic, social and cultural rights of the Saami in the legislation of the four states.

 

The Snowchange Project won the prestigious Worldwide Fund for Nature 2002 ´Panda Prize´ for best national ecological project. It was started in late 2000 to document and work with local and indigenous communities of the Northern regions. Included is their draft declaration on TEK and climate change.

 

The Taiga Rescue Network (TRN) is working to support local struggles and strengthen the cooperation between individuals, NGOs and indigenous peoples and nations concerned with the protection, restoration and sustainable use of the world's boreal forests by means that ensure the integrity of natural processes and dynamics. The site is a good source of information on the world’s largest terrestrial biome, its people, and the issues they face. Its North American affiliate, theBoreal Forest Network (BFN), has developed a listserv and offers a bi-monthly e-newsletter.

The Union of BC Indian Chiefs (UBCIC) supports the work of native people, whether at the community, nation or international level, in the common fight for the recognition of aboriginal rights and respect for indigenous cultures and societies.

The World Council of Whalers (WCW) is an international NGO founded in 1997 to provide a forum for whaling peoples around the world. Its mission is to promote their continued sustainable use of marine living resources, to protect their cultural, social, economic and dietary rights, and to address their concerns.