Environmental Regulation in Cities and Other Localities
The IUCN Academy of Environmental Law series
Edited by Benjamin J. Richardson
Chapter 9: Indigenous Peoples and Climate Change Policies: A Comparative Assessment of Indigenous Governance Models in Canada
Sophie Thériault* 1. INTRODUCTION Commentators widely acknowledge that Indigenous peoples are likely to be disproportionately affected by the impacts of climate change, including loss of biodiversity, sea level rise and coastal erosion.1 The unique position of Indigenous peoples in regard to climate change is marked, among other factors, by the reliance of many of their communities on the natural environment and its resources for their livelihoods and cultural integrity, as well as their marginalization from international and national decision-making processes related to climate and energy laws and policies.2 Hence, Indigenous peoples are often depicted as being ‘vulnerable’ to or ‘victims’ of climate change.3 * I would like to thank Benjamin Richardson and Sébastien Grammond for their useful comments about this chapter, as well as Jolyane Boivin for assisting me in doing the research. 1 See notably, Rebecca Tsosie, ‘Indigenous People and Environmental Justice: The Impact of Climate Change’ (2007) 78 University of Colorado Law Review 1625; Laura Westra, Environmental Justice and the Right of Indigenous Peoples: International and Domestic Law Perspectives (Earthscan, 2007). 2 Indigenous peoples worldwide are demanding to participate ‘fully and effectively’ in decision-making processes related to climate change mitigation and adaptation: see the Anchorage Declaration, Agreed by consensus of the participants in the Indigenous People’s Global Summit on Climate Change, Anchorage, Alaska, 24 April 2009; and the Indigenous People’s statement to the International Conference on Climate Change in Bali, Indonesia, December 2007 (‘Bali statement’) (reproduced in Ian Angus (ed.), The Global Fight for Climate Justice: Anticapitalist...
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