Sunday, December 7, 2008

United Call for Indigenous Climate Rights


United Call for Indigenous Climate Rights

Canadian Arctic Indigenous Peoples and Environmental Groups Launch United Call for Action on Climate Change at United Nations Negotiations

Poznan, Poland ― A unique coalition of northern Canadian Indigenous organizations and environmental groups today released the “Inuvik Declaration on Arctic Climate Change and Global Action” at the United Nations climate change negotiations in Poland. The Declaration calls on the Government of Canada to show leadership in fighting global warming at home and abroad, and to provide a massive increase in financing to help Northern Canada reduce emissions and adapt to the impact of climate change.

The statement, first drafted at a meeting hosted by the Gwich’in Council International in Inuvik, was launched at an event organized by the Arctic Athabaskan Council at the United Nations climate change meeting in Poznan.

“The Arctic is a critical component of the global climate system, and a changing Northern climate has worldwide implications,” said Bridget Larocque, Executive Director of Gwich’in Council International. “The far North is warming at 2–3 times the world average, and we are calling on the Government of Canada to do its fair share to keep average warming as far below 2˚C as possible so that Northern ecosystems and ways of life are not irreversibly damaged.”

“In recent years, the Government of Canada has acted as a drag on the United Nations climate change negotiations, working to block ambitious greenhouse gas reduction targets,” said Graham Saul, Executive Director of Climate Action Network Canada – Réseau action climat Canada. “Arctic Indigenous organizations and environmental groups are uniting in a common effort to push for real action on climate change.”

Founding Signatories of the The Inuvik Declaration include the Gwich’in Council International, Arctic Athabaskan Council, Climate Action Network Canada-Réseau action climat Canada, Ecology North, and the Pembina Institute. The Declaration represents the launch of a coordinated effort to strengthen Northern voices on the international climate policy-making stage, and encourage Canada to both significantly reduce greenhouse gas pollution and support Northern communities trying to adapt to emerging impacts. The coalition is united by a common commitment to a prosperous future for the Arctic and its peoples, and the urgent need for global action to prevent dangerous human-caused climate change.

To view the Declaration, see:
http://www.pembina.org/pub/1747

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