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IITC 29th Annual Treaty Conference

Sac and Fox Nation, Oklahoma

October 5, 2003


Strategy Session on the Environment


During the IITC 28th Annual Treaty Conference, held in Pu’uhonuo o Waimanalo Village, Oahu, Hawai’i, the Commission on the Environment, Biodiversity, Sustainable Development, Medicinal Plants and Bio-Piracy, Natural Resources, Right to Food, Food Security and Health developed a resolution that:


Reaffirmed established principals and international standards that assert Indigenous Peoples unqualified right to self-determination and acknowledged our unique relationship with and responsibilities to Mother Earth and the living beings in the natural world and; 


Denounced all forms of development that degrade the environment, cause harm to habitat and wildlife, or are imposed on or near our lands, waters, and territories and;


Called for the halt of all practices and policies that weaken or destroy our cultural and spiritual relationships with the natural world, but may also cause disease or terminal illness, deny our access to our natural resources, food, medicines and sacred sites, and lead to the migration of our Peoples from rural communities to urban areas.


The Strategy Session on the Environment, held at the 29th IITC Treaty Conference, reaffirmed the following:  the Resolution On The Environment developed in Hawaii, the Indigenous Peoples Kyoto Water Declaration created at the 3rd Water Forum in Koyoto, Japan, and the International Cancun Declaration of Indigenous Peoples created at the 5th Ministerial Conference in Cancun, Quintana Roo, Mexico.


We had additional concerns and would further like to:


bullet Denounce any degradation to the air, atmospheric layers surrounding the Earth and the pollution of outer space.
bullet Acknowledge that for many Indigenous Peoples, changes have occurred in our traditional diet due to the market economy and that this has caused many health problems for our people. We assert our right to eat quality food of nutritional value that is chemical and hormone free.
bullet Denounce mining companies and governments that continue to rape and pillage our lands for profit while leaving behind a legacy of contaminated lands and waters. We demand that our lands be cleaned up.
bullet We denounce the contamination of our lands and air in relation to oil extraction, particularly carbon black, the re-injection of toxic brine into our lands and aquifers and chemical mud created from this industry.  Furthermore, we denounce government agencies that ignore the contamination of our lands and who refuse to designate our lands to the national Super Fund.
bullet We denounce the National Energy Policy and the Indian Energy Title, both of which focus on the depletion of non-renewable resources, the burning of fossil fuels, which leads to climate change, and promote nuclear energy, the waste from which will be stored on Indian lands at Skull Valley or Yucca Mountain.  Furthermore, the Indian Energy Title as such is cloaked in sovereignty but in reality it is detrimental to Alaskan Natives because it acknowledges Native Corporations over tribal governments. 
bullet We denounce all notions to designate our lands as National Energy Sacrifice Areas and we reaffirm our demand for clean, renewable energy.  As an example of clean, renewable energy, Solar Dish Technology has been available for over 20 years and a single unit, operating on a sterling engine, can produce 27 kilowatts of electricity or enough energy to supply 10 homes with power. Furthermore, renewable energy, as defined by us, does not mean geothermal energy produced from sacred areas like Medicine Lake, CA or Mt. Mauna Kea in Hawai’i.
bullet We denounce the North American Free Trade Agreement as infringing upon the sovereignty and human rights of Indigenous Peoples and we denounce the notion that water, trees and minerals are trade goods.


We Call For:


bullet The protection of our waters from contamination and depletion due to unsustainable development.
bullet A phase out of fossil fuels and a just transition to renewables.
bullet The halt to the development of telescopes on Mauna Kea and on all other sacred places.
bullet The notification of Indigenous Peoples when nuclear waste is being transported through or near our lands.
bullet Water to be available to all people of the earth especially during times of drought.



Tom Goldtooth, National Director of the Indigenous Environmental Network, moderated this strategy session.









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