The Search for Legal Remedies
Edited by Randall S. Abate and Elizabeth Ann Kronk
Chapter 24: Climate change, law and indigenous peoples in Kenya: Ogiek and Maasai narratives
Indigenous peoples’ strong connection to the land, together with the ongoing climate change debate, prompts analysis of their increased vulnerability and ability to respond to climate change. The ability of indigenous people to respond is widely recognized to be dependent on several factors, such as cultural identity, livelihood, sense of place, security, visions for the future and aspects of governance, all of which have a long history. Indigenous peoples’ lives are a chronicle of their struggles to sustain their livelihood in fast-changing ecological, economic and political contexts coupled with the quest of their nation states’ to change their ways of life. The literature analyzing vulnerability to climate change has focused largely on bio-physical and economic impacts and contextual factors. There have been very few studies on the adequacy of laws and policies to address indigenous peoples’ vulnerability to climate change. Yet it is evident that climate variability and change do not occur in a vacuum but in the context of political, institutional, economic and social structures in a society which is subject to laws and policies.
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