Steve Sachs

"COP 23: Survival calls for stronger tribal voice at global climate conference," Survival International, November 3, 2017, https://, reported, " Survival International is calling for greater recognition from world leaders for tribal peoples’ crucial role in protecting the environment, ahead of the COP 23 conference in Bonn, Germany.
The conference, which takes place between November 6 and November 17, is a follow up to the groundbreaking Paris climate talks in 2015, and brings together government representatives and activists from around the world, including some indigenous people, to discuss environmental issues.
          Survival has been leading the global call for a conservation model that respects tribal peoples’ rights. This has been increasingly acknowledged by key international figures, including the United Nations Special Rapporteur for Indigenous Peoples, Victoria Tauli-Corpuz.
          Davi Kopenawa, a Yanomami shaman known as the Dalai Lama of the rainforest, said: “The rains come late. The sun behaves in a strange way. The world is ill. The lungs of the sky are polluted. We know it is happening. You cannot go on destroying nature.”
          Evidence proves that tribal territories are the best barrier to deforestation. Robust land protection measures and recognition of tribal land rights protect vast areas of forest, aiding biodiversity and reducing global CO2 levels.
          But despite this, some of the big conservation organizations are partnering with industry and tourism and destroying the environment’s best allies. The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and The Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) have both partnered with logging companies in the Congo Basin, none of which is logging at sustainable rates, and both have contributed to gross violations of the rights of tribal peoples like the Baka and Bayaka.
          Although some indigenous activists like Sonia Guajajara from Brazil will be present at the talks, tribal peoples’ voices will not be at the center of the conference. This is despite the fact that tribal peoples are the best conservationists and guardians of the natural world, and should be at the forefront of the environmental movement.
Survival’s Director Stephen Corry said: 'It’s dangerous to sideline tribal people in discussions on how best to protect our planet. They have far greater insight into how to look after the environment than anyone and we ignore their knowledge at our peril. For decades, industrialized society has ravaged the planet and destroyed indigenous peoples along the way. It’s time we started listening to them before it’s too late.'”

Climate reported, July 27, 2017, concerning a petition campaign, "The Trump Administration just found a new low in its attacks on science! Last week, the top climate policy official at the Department of the Interior, Joel Clement, went public with a whistleblower complaint after he was demoted to an accounting office.

Now his career is on the line, and the integrity of one of our nation's most critical defenses against climate disruption is at stake. Clement filed a formal whistleblower complaint on Wednesday, and Senators on both sides of the aisle are now pushing for an investigation.
          His story is quickly gaining media attention, but with so much noise in the national conversation, we can help ensure that attention stays focused on Clement and the more than 50 others forced from their jobs at the Department."
          "This was no routine shuffle. After consulting with the White House on the need for climate adaptation policy, Clement was pulled from his work with Native Alaskan communities displaced by rising seas. He was then reassigned to — get this — collecting royalty payments from fossil fuel extraction on public lands. A more insulting push out the door is hard to imagine.
Clement is just one of 50 employees at Interior who were given just two weeks’ notice that they would be re-assigned — an unprecedented shakeup that some say was politically motivated. 'Let's be honest: The Trump administration didn't think my years of science and policy experience were better suited to accounts receivable. ‘Clement wrote in the Washington Post on Wednesday, 'It sidelined me in the hope that I would be quiet or quit.'”
          "Senators Maria Cantwell (D-WA) and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) have both requested more information from the Department of Interior about the decision to relocate Clement and his colleagues. Supporting their requests now puts Zinke in a tough spot — he'll have to either cave to pressure, or reveal the dubious motives behind his attacks on climate science within the Department.
          This malfeasance at Interior is just the latest in an ongoing string of attacks on science — especially climate science — from the Trump Administration. The attacks will surely keep coming, and we'll keep on fighting back with all we've got.
          Truthfully Yours,
          Brant, Amanda, Emily and the rest of the Action team" main focus at the end of August 2017 was, "Stop Fossil Fuels. Build 100% Renewables. We are standing up to the fossil fuel industry to stop all new coal, oil and gas projects and build clean energy for all."
Featured projects were: "#SolarXL: we're launching a campaign to stop Keystone XL and build clean energy directly in its path;" "UNESCO: Protect culture, not coal: With coal plants built in civilization heritage sites, even our past is at stake. Tell @UNESCO to #saveheritage sites;" and " Support the Paris Agreement and Climate Action" We're all-in on action, no matter what Trump says."
          For details go to:

Kendall Mackey -, wrote, November 4, 2017, "e been fighting Keystone XL with renewable energy s"o"""Friends,
          The latest installation of solar panels directly in the path of the Keystone XL pipeline are going up in Nebraska this month. If TransCanada wants to build its dirty tar sands pipeline, they'll have to tear down clean, renewable energy.
Solar XL not only provides clean energy, it tells an inspiring story about the people and places who are standing up to resist Trump’s agenda and TransCanada’s dirty tar sands pipeline.
           This pipeline is not a done deal. In order to build it, TransCanada needs one final permit from Nebraska's Public Service Commission (PSC), which will vote to approve or deny the permit this month.
          In August, we delivered nearly 500,000 public comments and marched through Nebraska's state capital with our partners to urge the PSC to reject the permit, but that’s not all. The climate movement
          – including Indigenous leaders, farmers, ranchers, and activists like you – has been fighting for several years to keep dirty tar sands in the ground and stop this and every destructive project like it.
          This movement is growing and only getting stronger. We're ready to take bold action to protect our water and climate if Keystone XL gets approved. Stay tuned for an announcement before the end of November."
          Watch this inspiring new film that shares the stories of the people and vision behind

#SolarXL - then help build the momentum by sharing it far and wide at: xl/.
This 8-minute film takes you to the Cheyenne River Sioux Reservation in South Dakota where the pipeline would run less than a mile outside its border. It brings you along the river that the Tribe depends on for drinking water that would be contaminated when the pipeline leaks.
          It also features Jim Carlson and his farm in Nebraska where the first solar installation went up in his family’s corn fields. We learn what this pipeline would mean for his health, family, and well- being and why he’s been fighting this project for seven years."

EquatorBankAct announced, October 14, 2017,, "French Bank BNP Paribas took a step in the right direction. 90 more banks to go: French Mega- bank BNP Paribas announced this that it's cutting its funding for extreme oil and fracked gas projects in the US and Canada. While we (and our friends in France) will need to monitor the implementation and details, the news is REALLY GOOD.1
           Specifically: BNP Paribas will not fund new exploration, production, transportation and export projects related to Tar sands, fracked gas and the Arctic, nor the companies involved; The announcement includes a ban on funding Keystone XL and TransCanada, Line 3 and Enbridge, a Texas fracked gas export facility and any future gas export terminals in the Gulf; and more ! 2 "

"Joint Statement on the US Army Corps of Engineers’ Approval of the Bayou Bridge Pipeline : Stop Energy Transfer Partners’ Coalition vows to continue opposing ETP’s proposed crude oil pipeline through southern Louisiana, Indigenous Environmental Network, December 15, 2017, https://, stated, " Yesterday, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers granted permits to Bayou Bridge, LLC, a subsidiary of Energy Transfer Partners, to construct a 162.5-mile crude oil pipeline from Lake Charles to St. James, Louisiana. The Army Corps of Engineers refused to conduct a full Environmental Impact Statement for the project, despite pleas for such a study from communities directly impacted by the pipeline.
In response to the Bayou Bridge permit approvals, leaders of organizations in the Stop Energy Transfer Partners Coalition released the following statements: Cherri Foytlin, Bold Louisiana: 'To be honest, my hopes were never with the state and federal agencies who have consistently proven their lack of vision and scarcity of protection for the people and waters of this great state. The idea that this company, Energy Transfer Partners, who has destroyed land and water all over the United States, who carry the designation of “worst spill record,” who has created and maintained space for human rights abuses upon peaceful people - that they would be allowed to endanger over 700 of our waterways for their own profit is not only inconceivable, but proof of a moral bankruptcy within our systems of environmental protections. Yet, this is where we are. And while I am saddened by the news, I am equally sure that we will stand together as the mothers, fathers, sisters, and
          brothers, to peacefully endeavor to right the wrong of these misguided and foolish permittings.'
           Monique Verdin, United Houma Nation Tribal Councilmember: 'It's heartbreaking, but not surprising, that the Army Corps of Engineers would approve ANOTHER pipeline to be rammed through our already over exploited and fragile south Louisiana land and waters. 80,000 plus miles of pipelines crisscross our state and all those promises of jobs and progress, over the decades, have created places we call Cancer Alley and a state with some of the highest poverty in the nation. The Houma Nation and all those south of the proposed Bayou Bridge pipeline route deserve the right to clean water for drinking, for bathing, for fishing, for life. We know the risks and Energy Transfer Partners has got the track record for us to know the gamble is not worth it.' Anne Rolfes, Louisiana Bucket Brigade: 'We've opposed this project because Energy Transfer Partners has a terrible track record. This company has already polluted drinking water around the country, and  is  now a threat to our drinking water and our Atchafalaya Basin. The pipeline will ram through St. James Parish, a place already burdened by too much pollution. Why would we allow a company like ETP to come to Louisiana? We can do better than this. Our resistance will be peaceful. We will meet this pipeline with prayer. We are nonviolent. We are mothers, grandmothers, teachers and artists. We should be treated as the peaceful people that we are as this goes forward. ETP also has a track record of violence, and we don't need it in Louisiana.' Alicia Cooke, 350 New Orleans: “As a regulatory agency, if you look at ETP's safety record, you have absolutely no cover to assert that this pipeline does not pose a threat to environmental quality in Louisiana. The state has an obligation to explore better economic opportunities for Louisianans that don't put our drinking water at risk or destroy our wetlands. The regulators of the state of Louisiana had a chance here to make substantive change to "business as usual", to put citizens over corporations - instead, they failed us. But ETP has not yet won, nor will they win. Together we are powerful, and together we will continue our peaceful, prayerful resistance.' Dallas Goldtooth, Indigenous Environmental Network: “'Energy Transfer Partners wants to provoke a giant, then that's what they will get. Landowners, impacted communities, indigenous peoples and environmental groups have made their stance clear; for the benefit of the water, the land and Gulf Coast communities this dirty Bayou Bridge pipeline cannot be built. As we stood against DAPL and demand to keep fossil fuels in the ground, we stand against Bayou  Bridge.' Kelly Martin, Sierra Club: 'The Trump Administration is once again operating with reckless abandonment in its pursuit to put corporate polluters’ profits above all else. In their attempt to force this pipeline on the people of Louisiana, communities and families will face further threats of polluted air and water, the threat of explosions, and spills. But the people are not finished fighting this project. We will continue to explore every avenue possible to stop this project  from  moving  forward.' Ethan Buckner, Earthworks: 'From North Dakota to Pennsylvania, Texas to Louisiana, Energy Transfer Partners has remained steadfast in its commitment to steamroll communities living, working and praying along the path of their proposed pipelines. Yesterday’s permit approval isn’t a surprise, but it is a disappointment. ETP has failed to adequately address the concerns of those whose livelihoods it stands to destroy. The Army Corps may grant a permit, but our communities will not grant permission.' Brant Olson, Oil Change International: 'Plowing forward blindly to build this risky pipeline without even examining its environmental or climate impacts shows that this project isn't for Louisiana
          it's for Wall Street. Unscrupulous investors and banks stand to make millions while our most under- resourced communities and the global climate pay the price. Responsible lenders should follow the lead of those already backing away from ETP and its reckless pipelines.' Karen Feridun, Berks Gas Truth: 'Energy Transfer Partners has laid waste to community after community in Pennsylvania and Ohio. A month ago, we learned that the company had violated its permit by using horizontal directional drilling in my county where it was not permitted. When the drilling caused yet another spill, the company didn’t report it. How long are regulators going to enable bad  actors?  The  Army  Corps  should  reverse  its  decision.  We  will   fight  until  they  do.' Diana Best, Greenpeace USA: 'Greenpeace is proud to stand in solidarity with communities and local leadership opposing Energy Transfer Partners’ proposed Bayou Bridge Pipeline. We collectively know that these pipelines leak, they spill, they explode, and they put drinking water, our climate, and the health and safety of communities at risk. They undermine Indigenous sovereignty and threaten human rights. This company has thrown everything they’ve got at trying to silence opposition to their controversial projects with intimidation tactics, including hiring unethical private security firms like TigerSwan, filing dubious lawsuits, and encouraging violent and dehumanizing treatment of indigenous communities and their allies. But we know that this movement will not be silenced. Our response: We
          will only grow louder!'
           Kendall Mackey, 'The Army Corps and Energy Transfer Partners should expect resistance. Bayou Bridge is another dangerous pipeline from a company that's shown complete disregard for Indigenous rights, the land and water, and our climate. Louisianans are already living on the frontlines of the climate crisis and the fence-lines of the fossil fuel industry's destruction. A thorough environmental impact statement would've proved what we already know -- that Bayou Bridge goes against everything we should be doing to protect our future.' Hugh MacMillan, Food & Water Watch: “For ETP and Phillips 66 Partners, Bayou Bridge is the icing on the cake. By providing access to the sprawling St. James oil trading hub, the pipeline would allow these companies to cash in on exporting fracked oil from North Dakota, transported to the Gulf Coast via another joint venture of theirs, the Dakota Access pipeline. Louisiana water protectors are bold and right in standing against this shortsighted pipeline. The companies and their financiers will be held to account.'
          Learn MORE:
          The Bayou Bridge Pipeline is connected to the Dakota Access Pipeline system via the Phillips 66 Partners terminal in Beaumont : 3/transportation/us-gulf-coast-crude-terminals-expanding-to-meet-permian-growth.html
          Since 2006, Energy Transfer Partners' projects have experienced at least 329 dangerous incidents that resulted in a release, spill, injury or death to a person, emergency shutdown, explosion, fire, and/or property damage across the United State s: content/uploads/2017/12/ETP-Violation-History-12-15-17.pdf
           In May 2017, U.S. Congressman Cedric Richmond (LA-02) wrote a letter to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers requesting a full Environmental Impact Study for the Bayou Bridge Pipeline. Emai l for a copy of that letter.
           In November 2017, U.S. Congressman Raúl Grijalva (AZ-03), Ranking Member of the House Committee on Natural Resources, wrote a letter to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers requesting a full Environmental Impact Study for the Bayou Bridge Pipeline : http://democrats- 21%20RG%20to%20Army%20Corps%20on%20Bayou%20Bridge%20EIS.pdf
           In May 2017, several environmental groups and residents of St. James, Louisiana, filed a lawsuit alleging that the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources failed to adequately consider the impacts of accidents     and spills associated with Bayou Bridge on St. James:
           For several months, Louisiana communities have rallied at the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality to demand a full Environmental Impact Statement for Bayou Bridge, and protection of Louisiana’s pristine ecology and communities. See here for info on one of the recent rallie s:
           Earlier this year, Dutch bank ING and Norwegian bank DNB both announced that they would exit their financial relationships with ETP:

Lorraine Chow, Study: Fracking Chemicals Harm Kids' Brains," Eco Watch, October 25, 2017, https://, reported, "A new study from the Center for Environmental Health adds to the growing body of evidence that unconventional oil    and gas (UOG), which includes fracking, is harmful to human health and especially hazardous to vulnerable populations, including newborns and children.
          During the fracking process, a mixture of water, sand and chemicals is directed at high pressures into shale beds to release petroleum resources. This slurry involves the use of nearly 700 chemicals, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency found.
          The new research, published Wednesday in Reviews on Environmental Health, examined five particular air and water pollutants that are widely used in or byproducts of UOG development and operations—heavy metals, particulate matter, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, BTEX (benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, xylenes), and endocrine disrupting compounds.
"Every stage of the UOG lifecycle, from well construction to extraction, operations, transportation and distribution can lead to air and water contamination," the paper notes.
          Dauntingly, the researchers found that early life exposure to these substances has been linked to potentially permanent learning and neuropsychological deficits, neurodevelopmental disorders and neurological birth defects..."
 , "Fossil Free House Parties," November 1, 2017, parties?utm_medium=email&utm_source=actionkit, stated, "

Join us November 11th through November 19th at a #FossilFree house party near you. Meet others in your community who want to organize to build local power and take climate action.
          At the house parties, we will get to work on building a just and equitable Fossil Free world by passing local resolutions calling for 100% renewable energy for all and an immediate halt of all new fossil fuel projects.
Together, we can create a resounding upswell of public support for the ambitious climate solutions we need."
          At least 40 FossilFree house parties were planned as of November 1.

The Indigenous Environmental Network,, announced September 7, 2017, “#StopETP is a growing coalition of communities and organizations that care deeply about our rights to clean water, clean air, a stable climate, and a democratic society. We believe that landowners and indigenous tribes have the right to determine what happens to their land. But Energy Transfer Partners (ETP), a giant oil company based in Texas, has been consistently violating those rights in their drive to build new oil and gas pipelines. And along the way, communities have suffered.
          Organizations Involved:
, 350 DC, 350 Louisiana, Alamosa Riverkeeper, Appalachia Resist!, Bates Environmental Coalition, Bold Iowa, Bold Louisiana, Blair County Coalition for Public Safety, Cahaba Riverkeeper, Climate March, Coastal Carolina Riverwatch,  Crystal Coast Waterkeeper, Earthworks, Els Verds – Alternativa Verda, Environmental Stewardship, Food & Water Watch, Friends for Environmental Justice, Foundation for Economic Democracy, Goshen United for Public Safety, Hurricane    Creekkeeper, Indigenous Environmental Network, Lakota People’s Law Project, Milwaukee Riverkeeper, Native Organizers Alliance, NoDAPL Global Solidarity, North Louisiana for Earth & Water Justice, Ohio River Citizens Alliance, Oil Change International, Rainforest Action Network, Rising Hearts Coalition, Romero Institute, San Francisco Baykeeper, Sierra Club, Seeding Sovereignty,, Stolen Nation, Waccamaw Riverkeeper, Waterkeeper Alliance, Waterkeepers Chesapeake, Winyah Rivers Foundation… and many more.”
          “ On September 7th, 8th and 9th we're taking action across the country to #StopETP and defend Indigenous rights and our water, land, air, and climate .” Locations include: Live Oak, FL, Dallas, TX, St. James, LA, Chicago, IL, Des Moines, IA, Earlham, IA, Cleveland, OH, TX, Columbus, OH, Marietta, OH, Marcus Hook, PA, Duncansville, PA, Huntingdon, PA, Applegate, OR, Corvallis, OR, Joshua Tree, CA, and Concord, CA."
          For more information go to:

Numerous Indigenous peoples, organizations, and people, including the International Treaty Council were present and expressing their views on the need for extensive rapid action on climate change, at the 23rd session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 23) to the UN Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) which took place at the headquarters of the UNFCCC Secretariat in Bonn, Germany, in November 2017 (https://, stated in September 2017, “Labor Day has come and gone, and kids are back in school, except those in Florida, the Caribbean, and southeast Texas, where Hurricanes Harvey and Irma have caused such devastation. These horrible events, and the earthquakes in Oaxaca and Chiapas, Mexico, have caused hundreds to lose their lives and thousands to face devastating rebuilding and billions in rebuilding costs. We send our best wishes for speedy recovery for all, and for greater attention to be placed upon the critical issues of climate change and the impact on increased and more extreme natural disasters.
          Part of our mission at is to make it simple and affordable for individuals and businesses of all sizes to make a difference in environmental sustainability. This month, and through

the end of this year, we are offering a "Bring a Partner" discount program to our current Carbon free ® Business Partners. Simply refer your suppliers, customers, neighbors and friends who own and run businesses to join our Carbon free ® Business Partnership program for 2018, and we will discount current partnership renewals by $60 for each new Carbon free ® Business Partner. Two of our long-term Carbon free ® Business Partners, Arbor Teas and Earth Science Naturals,
          are among three dozen businesses celebrating their tenth anniversary with this year. Please read about their meaningful sustainability initiatives and commitments, and consider the same for your organization. If you've traveled this summer, you can offset the carbon footprint  of your trip as  well:
           Plant Trees
           Offset your personal daily emissions
          Offset summer vacation travel
          Join our Carbon free® Business Partnership Program

Physicians for Social Responsibility, stated in a campaign, July 25, 2017,, " President Trump and some in Congress are advancing a federal budget that threatens our health, slashing funding for programs that keep our air and water clean and passing ideological policy riders that gut public health protections.
For example, the House's version of the energy and water appropriation bill would cut funding for EPA clean energy programs by $1 billion – that's almost half!
           Besides attacks on EPA's budget, certain member of Congress are including unnecessary riders (amendments not centrally related to the bill) intended to further weaken environmental protections at the behest of industry. Dangerous riders include:
          allowing the EPA to withdraw the Clear Water Rule without accepting any public input; delaying EPA's latest  health standards for ground-level ozone smog pollution for ten

The NRDC Action Fund stated by E=mail, September 30, 2017, "The Trump administration is secretly taking the dangerous first steps toward opening our pristine Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska to risky oil drilling.
This is the worst assault on the Arctic Refuge in decades — and it's for no other reason than to bolster fossil fuel industry profits. We need your help to stop it at all costs. Here's the thing: The administration can't open the refuge to drilling without the go-
ahead from Congress.
           Please urge your senators and representative to do everything in their power to stop Trump's despicable drilling plans!
Often called "America's Serengeti", the Arctic Refuge's 1.5 million-acre coastal plain is its biological heart: Our nation's largest denning site for pregnant polar bears ... the last home of 350 shaggy muskoxen ... the birthing ground for the 197,000-member Porcupine caribou herd ... and vital to the culture and survival of the region's Gwich'in people.
          The Trump administration's short-sighted drilling scheme throws all of that into jeopardy. Its proposal would open the door to drilling by allowing massive seismic testing — which has been outlawed for 35 years because of the obvious threats that it poses to imperiled wildlife and their habitat.
          But still, President Trump and anti-wildlife members of Congress want to ram this short-sighted plan through as quickly as possible — so they're hard at work pushing pro-drilling legislation and using a backdoor budget process to allow drilling on the refuge's coastal plain.
          Trump and his allies in Congress are already proposing massive funding cuts to the EPA and other critical agencies that protect our environment, our climate, and our health. We can't let them add the Arctic Refuge to the chopping block."

CREDO, "Tell banks: Do not fund the Trans Mountain pipeline," August 6, 2018,, stated, "Most Americans have never heard of Canada's Trans Mountain pipeline. But starting next month, Kinder Morgan – the largest oil pipeline company in North America – plans to nearly triple the pipeline's capacity to transport tar sands oil. In fact, the Trans Mountain pipeline could soon transport far more tar sands oil than either the Dakota Access pipeline or the Keystone XL pipelines.1
Pipeline projects are incredibly expensive, and 26 banks have poured billions of dollars into this financing this one.2,3 With enough pressure on these 26 banks, we can make Kinder Morgan a toxic investment – but we have to act fast before construction is slated to start next month.
          Tell banks to stop financing the Trans Mountain pipeline and all tar sands oil projects.
          Expanding the Trans Mountain pipeline would be a disaster for Indigenous rights, our climate and the natural environment along its route. The existing Trans Mountain pipeline has already logged 82 leak incidents, including four major oil spills.4 More than 120 First Nations and Tribes oppose the pipeline expansion, including all of the First Nations in the lower mainland of British Columbia.5 Several First Nations have filed legal challenges.6
          The pipeline would increase extraction of tar sands – one of the dirtiest and most climate- destructive forms of oil – at a time when any new fossil fuel production puts the goals of the Paris climate agreement out of reach.
The banks funding the Trans Mountain pipeline include many names well known in the United States, including HSBC, Bank of America and SunTrust. By offering credit to Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain pipeline, these 26 banks failed a clear test of their commitment to stopping climate change and respecting Indigenous rights.
          Tell banks to stop financing Kinder Morgan’s oil pipeline and all tar sands projects.
          The good news is that we know this kind of activism works. In July, the largest association of credit unions in North America froze its funding for the pipeline. The group, Desjardins, said it plans to pull its $145 million from the project because of environmental concerns.7
          A well-known investment research firm recently encouraged investors to sell their shares in Kinder Morgan, reporting that Kinder Morgan shares have lost value over the past three months and citing the opposition from indigenous and environmental groups as one reason why.8
          As the Trump administration blocks and reverses climate policies, the movement to stop fossil fuel projects by stopping their funding is picking up steam. In June, Sweden's largest national pension fund, AP7, sold investments in six companies, including ExxonMobil and TransCanada, because their activities breach the Paris climate agreement.9 As investing in pipelines becomes more toxic, banks and eventually energy companies themselves will start looking for safer alternatives.
          Trans Mountain is just as dangerous as more well-known pipelines, but too few people know that this expansion is planned – or that we have a chance to stop it.
          Tell the CEOs of these banks to stop financing Kinder Morgan’s oil pipeline and all tar sands projects.
          Photo: fdevalera/Getty Images References:
          Ay_e Gürsöz, "5 Things You Need to Know About Kinder Morgan's Trans Mountain Pipeline," Rainforest Action Network, June 6, 2017.
          Tucker McLachlan and Chris Hatch, "Who's banking on Kinder Morgan's Trans Mountain Pipeline? National Observer, July 21, 2017.
          Toronto-Dominion Bank, Royal Bank of Canada, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, Scotiabank, CIBC, Bank of Montreal, National Bank of Canada, JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Mizuho Financial Group, Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi, Barclays Bank, China Construction Bank, SunTrust, Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group, HSBC, ATB Financial, FIPPGV/PX, Desjardins, Bank of China, United Overseas Bank, United Overseas Bank, Siemens Financial, Deutsche Bank, Credit Suisse, Societe Generale, Canadian Western Bank, Industrial & Commercial Bank of China.
          Trans Mountain, "Spill history," April 1, 2017.
          Treaty Alliance Against Tar Sands Expansion, "Treaty alliance against tar sands expansion," accessed Aug. 1, 2017.
          Karin Larsen, "'It is our Standing Rock:' First Nations announce legal actions against feds, Kinder Morgan," CBC, Jan. 19, 2017.
          CBC News, "What Desjardins' investment freeze could mean for Kinder Morgan's pipe dreams," July 10, 2017.
          Zacks Equity Research, "Kinder Morgan's Trans Mountain Pipeline Financing at Risk," NASDAQ, July 11, 2017.

Food & Water Action, stated October 11, 2017, in an E-mail, that it "is endorsing and campaigning for candidates in Pennsylvania who have pledged to fight  the  extremely dangerous Mariner East 2 pipeline. We can stop the pipeline by winning local elections in key municipalities along the pipeline route.
          Mariner East 2 is a dangerous pipeline being built by Energy Transfer Partners that would transport extremely explosive materials known as Highly Volatile Liquids through countless communities, endangering hundreds of thousands of people in its path. These materials are derived from fracking, and the pipeline would be used to export them to Scotland to make plastic. ¹ Construction has already started, but we still have a chance to stop it."
198 Methods, Amazon Watch, BankTrack, Beyond Extreme Energy, Climate Hawks Vote, Daily Kos, DivestInvest Individual, Earth Guardians, Friends of the Earth Action, Green America, Honor the Earth, Indigenous Environmental Network, Mazaska Talks, New Economy Coalition, People's Action, SierraRise, and were engaged in a campaign, in October 2017,
, " Tell big banks: Stop financing climate disasters and respect Indigenous rights," stating, "This October, more than 90 of the world’s largest banks will meet in Brazil to recommit to the Equator Principles, a set of rules guiding which big infrastructure projects they will and won't finance.
          Now is the time for them to act on their supposed principles. They must stop financing climate change and respect Indigenous peoples’ rights
. Sign now to demand that they make commitments to change.
          These “Equator banks” have all promised to avoid or minimize the social, environmental and climate impacts of such projects, and to respect the rights and interests of Indigenous communities affected by them.
          These Principles for banks to follow sound good – but they’re not working.
The Principles as they are written now are not stopping banks from financing disaster projects that are destroying our climate. Nor are these Principles stopping banks from trampling on the rights of Indigenous peoples, fully recognized in international law, to reject projects they do not want in their territories.1
          The U.S. Dakota Access Pipeline, fiercely opposed by the Standing Rock and Cheyenne River Lakota Tribes, and the Honduran Agua Zarca hydro project, where Indigenous leader Berta Cáceres was murdered for leading the Lenca people’s opposition to the project, are but two examples of projects financed by banks under the Equator Principles.
          Sign here to demand that the Equator Banks act decisively when they meet October 24 in São Paulo, Brazil, and commit to stop financing climate disasters and respect Indigenous peoples’ rights and land.
          We call on the Equator Principles Association to agree in Brazil to a full revision process for the Principles, so that they reflect at minimum two solid commitments:
           Stop financing climate disasters:
          Include a full commitment to the Paris Agreement goal of limiting global temperature rise to below 2 degrees, aiming for 1.5 degrees;

Include stringent and binding criteria that all projects to be financed under the Equator framework be fully aligned with reaching the Paris Agreement goals; and for this reason: Explicitly exclude all new fossil fuel extraction, transportation and power projects from financing under the Equator Principles.
           Respect Indigenous peoples’ rights and territories:
          Include an explicit commitment to uphold the right of Indigenous peoples to give or deny free, prior, and informed consent for projects situated on territories they traditionally use and occupy;
          Commit to not financing projects, neither directly or indirectly, that did not obtain such consent;
          Strengthen due diligence and consultation processes to ensure that Indigenous peoples’ rights are fully respected;
          Ensure that Indigenous peoples and other project-affected communities have full access to grievance channels with project sponsors and financing banks when their rights and interests are violated

Chase Iron Eyes of the Lakota People's Law Project e-mailed, November 9, 2017, " Standing Rock raised the stakes for the global environmental and indigenous rights movements. Now, another victory. A North Dakota judge has ruled that my legal team is entitled to substantially more evidence from the North Dakota State Prosecutor’s office than has been forthcoming in other water protector cases. We will be able to take sworn testimony and demand documents from Energy Transfer Partners and their private, militarized security firm, TigerSwan.
          The timing on this ruling is important for all environmental protectors. 84 members of Congress—nearly all Republicans—recently sent a letter to Attorney General Jeff Sessions encouraging him to invoke the domestic terrorism statute to prosecute fossil fuel protesters. These attacks on our fundamental constitutional rights, spearheaded by Donald Trump and parroted by congressional shills of Big Oil, should deeply concern all citizens who value our right to speak freely and demonstrate.
           Our team has produced a new video [available at: https:// trial] that explains how I was singled out and targeted—and the justification for our bold legal strategy to expose the illegal and immoral wedding of the fossil fuel industry, law enforcement, and militarized private security forces. You’ll see why I took action on behalf of my people, millions of others downstream, and Unci Maka—Grandmother Earth."

A group of archaeologists and other researchers issued a report, in September 2017, calling for increased protection from drilling in an expansive area around Chaco Culture National Historic Park, in New Mexico, because previously indiscernible ancient roads leading to Chaco had been discovered (Susan Montoya Bryan, "Researchers want Chaco Shielded from drilling," Albuquerque Journal, September 23, 2017).

Carbon Fund reported on its work, December 28, 2017,, " 25 Billion Pounds of CO 2 ! 179 Carbon reduction projects; 40 US states: 23 Countries.
As an environmentalist and donor, you want to know your donations are making a difference. With your generous support, has been able to support projects all over the world reducing billions of pounds of CO2 and supporting new technologies and more efficient ways of doing things."

Nuclear Information and Resource Service, September 14, 2017, commented in an E-mail, “Irma and Harvey mark the first time on record that two category 4 or higher hurricanes have struck the U.S. mainland in the same year, both in states that have nuclear reactors. The potential danger is overwhelmingly apparent. At the rate at which we’re experiencing extreme natural disasters, how can we be certain the next one won’t trigger a Fukushima-like nuclear meltdown?

It’s ludicrous that the Trump administration would propose nuclear bailouts for this dying, dirty, and dangerous energy source. We have to stop Trump's $100+ Billion nuclear bailout!
          The combined estimated damage from Irma and Harvey is about $290 billion. Where the feds will get the money for those repairs is a mystery to most of us. But the idea that Trump wants to give
          $100+ billion in bailouts to coal and nuclear power in the face of these dirty-energy-fueled disasters is unconscionable – it must be stopped.
          Now imagine the Turkey Point reactors, 25 miles from Miami, which were in line for a possible direct hit from Irma, had been struck. The financial cost would nearly double. Fukushima costs are still rising, currently sitting somewhere around $188 billion. Which does not include the cost in human lives, trauma, health, and quality of life.
          We cannot afford to let the Trump administration bail out the nuclear industry.
          The stakes are too high. Our rapidly changing climate has triggered extreme and uncertain weather patterns. We can’t allow this danger to be exacerbated by an avoidable catastrophic nuclear meltdown.”

The Nuclear Information Service wrote, October 13, 2017,, "Two weeks ago, Department of Energy Secretary, Rick Perry, proposed a massive bailout for nuclear and coal power plants far worse than anyone expected. The proposal is so extreme that industry commentators and reporters thought it would be rejected! No such luck. Rogue Trump appointees heading FERC (the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission) are rushing to approve the nuclear-coal bailout as fast as possible.
We must take action now to stop this BAD policy!
          On Wednesday, NIRS submitted more than 10,000 comments for the record at FERC in opposition to the Trump Administration’s plans for the Commission to enact these massive bailouts. We have to keep up and build this pressure as much as possible over the next three weeks, to mobilize thousands more petitions and make Congress hold FERC accountable.
          This is a fight for America’s clean energy future.
          If adopted, the proposal would bail out expensive and uneconomical nuclear and coal power plants that can no longer compete with renewable energy, and saddle ratepayers with higher costs, all the while posing obstacles to the integration of cleaner and less risky energy sources such as solar and wind.
Survey after survey shows that Americans want more clean and safe renewable energy! To artificially prop up these dirty energy industries and then to force consumers to pay the bill to enrich these already astonishingly profitable companies ranks as one of the most anti-environment and anti- consumer steps of the last 50 years."

The League of Conservation voters (LCV), stated, September 18, 2017,;jsessionid=0000000 0.app315b?autologin=true&NONCE_TOKEN=B15ACBF496FCFA8BE542785A05E85140, “ LCV
learned — late last night — that Interior Secretary Zinke is recommending shrinking or modifying ten national monuments. This includes shrinking the boundaries of Utah’s Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante, Nevada’s Gold Butte, and Oregon’s Cascade-Siskiyou.
The Interior report — that the Trump Administration refused to release — would open up vast swaths of protected areas land and water that are part of our national monuments — to Big Polluters and other special interests. T his report constitutes an unprecedented attack on protected lands and waters in the United States. But removing existing safeguards for our public lands and waters at this scale is beyond unprecedented — it exceeds Trump’s statutory and constitutional authority. We can’t let  Trump
get away with this.

Food and Water Watch, "We just beat Nestlé!" November 9, 2017, announced via E-mail, "For nine years, we've worked with the community in Hood River County and people across Oregon to stop     Nestlé's     plan to grab their water and build a water bottling  plant.

The community never gave up the fight against Nestlé's attempt to take their water — and they won.
          After years of building opposition locally, the issue was finally put on the ballot last year. Voters in Hood River County overwhelmingly voted to ban water bottling in the area and keep Nestlé out. But the state still tried to move forward with a deal that would give Nestlé access to the area's water. After more pressure from the community, Oregon Governor Kate Brown directed her Department of Fish and Wildlife to stop the deal!

No Back 40 Mine,, stated, "The Back Forty  Mine project is a proposed open pit metallic sulfide mine located on the banks of the Menominee River in Lake Township, Michigan. Aquila Resources Inc. (TSX: AQA) ("Aquila"), a Canadian development stage company, is actively seeking the necessary approvals to mine and process gold, zinc, copper, silver and other minerals at the site.
          To date the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) has approved three of the four required permits for the project. The Nonferrous Metallic Mineral Mining Permit and the Michigan Air Use Permit to Install for the project were approved by the MDEQ on December 28, 2016. The National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit was approved on April 5th, 2017. The permit for wetland impacts is currently under consideration before the MDEQ. The Menominee Nation and many allies including local citizens, local governments, environmental organizations, and grassroots organizations are opposed to the mine, committed to stopping the project and are organized in efforts to bring about public awareness about the
harmful impacts the mining operation would have if approved."
The Menominee Nation is steadfast in its opposition to the proposed mine and its commitment to preserving the Menominee River. We ask you to stand in solidarity with us as we continue our fight to protect our place of origin, our sacred sites, the wildlife, water and environment for future generations."
           Aquila’s Back Forty “open pit mine” would be constructed ~150 feet from the Menominee River. Because this is a METALLIC SULFIDE MINE, the mine’s proximity raises serious flooding and inundation risks. Any mine-related water contamination would threaten the health of the Menominee’s fish populations and recreational fishing, especially Lake Sturgeon. Millions of dollars have been invested in the recovery of sturgeon in the Menominee River, where they are threatened but “stable” after years of collaborative sturgeon habitat restoration efforts by Michigan and Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, with assistance from federal agencies, fishing clubs
          and nonprofit environmental groups such as the River Alliance of Wisconsin.
          The Back Forty mine targets a section of the Menominee River considered a world class smallmouth bass fishery – one of the best in North America! Fishing clubs are deeply concerned about the future of Smallmouth Bass Fishing on the Menominee River, as are the small businesses, including river guiding companies, that depend on the health of the river. The proposed mine threatens natural resources of the Menominee River, an interstate waterway jointly managed by Wisconsin and Michigan. The Menominee River is the state boundary line, and is the largest watershed in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. The Wisconsin Resources Protection Council is actively opposed to this sulfide mine proposal. The Center for Science in Public Participation conducted a red-flag review of Aquila Resources mining application and found multiple issues of concern, serious omissions and miscalculations, including specific recommendations and technical actions regarding Aquila’s plans for Water Management, Tailings & Waste Rock Management Facilities, Pit Backfill Metal Leaching, Water Treatment Post Closure, Financial Assurance, and other topics. According to
          their report
          'Monitoring wells need to be placed to ensure the tailings facility embankment is not contributing acid or metal leaching to groundwater.'

'Given the potential for antimony, selenium, and arsenic to mobilize under neutral conditions, monitoring will need to occur at the TWRMF (tailings waste rock management facility) leachate sumps and at monitoring wells on and around the backfilled pit until hydrology and chemistry have stabilized.'
          'The TWRMF cap is designed to reduce infiltration, but given the extremely acidic nature of the material that will be enclosed, the cost of a WTP (water treatment plant) should be included in financial assurance for at least the 20 year post closure monitoring period.'
           'When reviewing the indirect and direct cost estimates for the Back Forty financial assurance, it is obvious that it has been significantly underestimated, especially with regard to the indirect cost calculations(…) the direct costs should be reviewed by a qualified party to correct assumptions that underestimate the cost of reclamation that would need to be conducted by a regulatory agency. “The entire planned Back Forty open pit mine and Tailings Waste Rock Management Facility basins (TWRMF) hinge on a single underlying assumption: that the State of Michigan will agree to a proposed LAND SWAP with Aquila Resources. The proposed land exchange threatens critical habitat, including threatened and endangered species. The mining proposal’s open pit mine, contingent upon the land swap, would disturb or destroy tribal archaeological resources, treaty protected natural resources, and Menominee River fisheries. Shakey Lakes: The Escanaba State Forest’s Shakey Lakes Oak-Pine Barrens Ecological Reference Area (ERA) and a proposed Biodiversity Stewardship Area (BSA) are adjacent to the proposed mine site. A mine next to this ecological reference area will degrade the ERA, endangering rare habitat, and jeopardize the state’s Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification for sustainably-harvested timber. Aquila has made fraudulent 'Life of Mine' statements! When reviewing any mine proposal, one basic question must be answered: 'what is the proposed Life of Mine (LOM)?' In order to correctly calculate a mine’s risks, benefits and cumulative environmental impacts, an accurate LOM estimate is essential. According to Aquila’s permit application, 'The (Back Forty) Project will be an open pit mining operation' and the 'Life of Mine (LOM) operation is planned to be approximately 7 years.' This is misleading. Elsewhere, Aquila describes the Back Forty project as having a '16 year life of mine (LOM), of which 12.5 million tonnes is open-pit and 3.6 million tonnes is underground.' Back Forty is described as a 16 year mine in Aquila’s press releases, in communications with the Menominee Indian Tribe, and in letters to investors and local community leaders. According to their Project Fact Sheet: “we support a transparent process(…) visit our website at project for more information.” Visitors to Aquila’s website  find  a  16  year  mine  described. The design of the Back Forty Project (an open pit sulfide mine on a river) is described as comparable to Wisconsin’s Flambeau Mine (another open pit sulfide mine on a river). Does the Flambeau Mine prove that riverside sulfide mining can be done safely? Absolutely not — get the
          facts: Because the Back Forty would be a sulfide mine, it threatens to leach sulfuric acid, which is extremely hazardous to freshwater rivers, lakes, streams and groundwater. Again, the Center for Science in Public Participation warns that the mine’s 'ARD (Acid Rock Drainage) risk is very high. Most material contains sulfides… (…) All tailings are expected to generate acid, with the exception of tailings produced in year 3 of mining. Additionally, over 75% of the waste rock is expected to generate acid.' Sulfide mining could pollute groundwater or devastate the Menominee River, which drains into Lake Michigan."

Wilderness Watch stated, July 20, 2017, lBlastContent&eId=e612d4fd-76e1-49fb-9d31-267751e30ab4, "TAKE ACTION: Tell the U.S. Forest Service to permanently protect the watershed of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness from sulfide mining!"
          "The U.S. Forest Service is seeking public comments on a proposal to end the practice of leasing federally-owned mineral rights to mining corporations in the watershed of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness in northern Minnesota.

Please join us in urging the Forest Service to protect the Boundary Waters watershed from sulfide mining, one of  the most toxic forms of mining. In fact, sulfide mining has caused environmental problems all over the world.
          The Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness is America's most visited Wilderness. It is 1.1 million acres with more than 1,000 pristine lakes and 1,200 miles of rivers and streams. The lakes, rivers, and streams of the Boundary Waters watershed are among the cleanest waters in the U.S., and are especially sensitive to the acids and heavy-metals in copper mine pollution. Priceless and irreplaceable, the Boundary Waters Wilderness must not be put at risk of perpetual pollution from the most toxic industry in America. Your comments are due by August
          11, 2017."

Massive protests in Australia and abroad were reported in October 2017 to the government of Australia considering allowing development of what would become one of the world's largest coal mines in the remote area of the Halilee Basin. The main objection is to the global warming impact of burning more coal (Jacqueline Williams, "QuwariohRoiling Australia: Does the Planet Need More Coal?" The New York Times, October 15, 2017).

The Havasupai Tribe, living in the Grand Canyon in Arizona, in June 2017, was objecting to the mining and transporting of uranium near the Grand Canyon as a threat to their only water supply (Krista Allen, "Havasupai concerned about uranium mine, transport," Navajo Times, June 29, 2017).

WildEarth Guardians joined with Waterkeeper Alliance, in October 2017, to form the Rio Grande Waterkeeper "to protect and restore the iconic Rio Grande" (;jsessionid=00000000.app303b?idb=873760735&df_id=8 782&8782.donation=form1&mfc_pref=T&NONCE_TOKEN=CC23E31A676F05A166D2B4207379A B4E&autologin=true&idb=0#.WdaCNUzMxm8).

The Nuclear Information Resource Service stated, August 1, 2017,, " The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) is about to amend the licenses for TWELVE Canadian nuclear power reactors on Lake Ontario to allow them to export their nuclear waste to the United States and other countries. Send your comments to the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission by August 3rd to oppose Canadian nuclear power license amendments that allow radioactive waste import and export between Canada and the U.S.!
          Canada has already been sending some nuclear waste to the U.S. for “processing,” but the amendments would open the door to unlimited amounts especially as the reactors are generating more waste. There are numerous nuclear waste ‘processors,’ licensed by state nuclear agencies including TN, IL, PA and WA, that burn, shred, melt, acid-etch, and launder radioactive materials. There are a few facilities that deliberately release radioactive waste to regular garbage dumps and commercial recycling streams--materials that are used to make everyday household items-- without public notice!
          Most processors opened without public knowledge or input. These facilities are violating the public interest by releasing radioactivity into the environment, solid waste landfills, incinerators, and recycling streams.
Tell the CNSC to reject the license amendments that allow international nuclear waste trafficking.
           The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission used to require licenses to allow nuclear waste to be imported from and exported to other countries. When concerned organizations challenged the licenses, the NRC changed the rules to allow "wastes" to come into the U.S. without a specific license if they were called "materials," despite their radioactivity and contamination with plutonium, cesium, strontium, iodine, tritium and more.

Now Canada is ensuring continued and accelerated import to the U.S. of its waste —er— "materials" by adding amendments to the nuclear power licenses for export and import.
          Help us stop the unnecessary transport and release of radioactive metals, plastics, concrete, and more into our zippers, baby toys, belt-buckles, cars, and other everyday items."

Oceana stated, July 21, 2017,, "The Trump Administration recently withdrew a proposed rule that would have protected some of the world’s most endangered species caught and killed in the drift gillnet fishery targeting swordfish off California.
           This illegal action is a tremendous setback following years of effort and tens of thousands of Oceana Wavemakers like you voicing their support for the proposed rule and other measures to protect at-risk species.
          But we won’t sit back and stop now – Not when dolphins, pilot whales and endangered leatherback sea turtles are left to die in mile-long swordfish drift gillnets off our coast. Last week, Oceana filed a lawsuit challenging the Administration’s decision."

Eric Lipton and Barry Meier , "Under Trump, Coal Mining Gets NewLife on U.S. Lands A business-friendly secretary of the interior has moved to invigorate a struggling industry,  reversing Obama-era restrictions to help create 'wealth and jobs.'” The New York Times, August 6, 2017, https:// . reported, "The Trump administration is wading into one of the oldest and most contentious debates in the West by encouraging more coal mining on lands owned by the federal government. It is part of an aggressive push to both invigorate the struggling American coal industry and more broadly exploit commercial opportunities on public lands.
          The intervention has roiled conservationists and many Democrats, exposing deep divisions about how best to manage the 643 million acres of federally owned land — most of which is in the West — an area more than six times the size of California. Not since the so-called Sagebrush Rebellion during the Reagan administration have companies and individuals with economic interests in the lands, mining companies among them, held such a strong upper hand.
          Clouds of dust blew across the horizon one recent summer evening as a crane taller than the Statue of Liberty ripped apart walls of a canyon dug deep into the public lands here in the Powder River Basin, the nation’s most productive coal mining region. The mine pushes right up against a reservoir, exposing the kind of conflicts and concerns the new approach has sparked.
          'If we don’t have good water, we can’t do anything,' said Art Hayes, a cattle rancher who worries that more mining would foul a supply that generations of ranchers have relied upon."

Bree LaCasse, City Council candidate (Portland, ME sent out an Email via,, July 30, 2017, " Trump's EPA administrator, Scott Pruitt, just rejected the advice of his own agency's scientists and overturned an Obama-era ban on Dow Chemical's bee-killing pesticide chlorpyrifos.
Now, with bees dying by the million and Trump in the White House, it's up to local governments to protect  the  bees--and  more  and  more  local  mayors  and  city  councils  are  stepping  up. Will you sign my petition urging local governments to take action to protect their communities from synthetic and  bee-killing pesticides?  ( We rely on bees, butterflies, and other pollinators for more than 70 percent of the world's food crops. That's what's at stake in this fight: without bees and other natural pollinators, we simply won't have enough food to feed the world. And the global bee die-off has been happening so fast that scientists are still scrambling to detect all the impacts. And now, a new study also finds that neonic pesticides are killing warblers, swallows,

starlings and thrushes nearly as fast as the bees -- at current rates, 35 percent of the bird population will disappear in just 10 years in the areas studied.
          As a candidate for city council, I will vote support a local ordinance banning bee-killing pesticides that can be a model for other cities. By signing and sharing this petition, you can help local candidates like me demonstrate the widespread support for local action to ban  bee-killing  pesticides." "More information: https://
          chlorpyrifos.html: orager_bees.html.

International Indian Treaty Council, "Tribes call for US Implementation of UN Mercury Convention," stated, "On October 20th, 2017 Tribal Leaders participating in the Annual Conference of the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) adopted a resolution calling for United States (US) government to uphold its international obligations under the United Nation Minamata Convention on Mercury by reducing mercury contamination impacting the health and environment of Tribal Nations. The resolution was submitted by Pit River Tribe of California and was strongly supported by the International Indian Treaty Council (IITC).
          The resolution specifically encourages the United States to implement the newly established Minamata Convention on Mercury, is a global internationally-binding treaty calling on State Parties including the US to protect human health and the environment from the harmful effects of mercury. Mercury is linked to serious health problems, including heart disease and neurological problems in infants and children. Mercury enters the environment and human body through contamination emissions from coal-fired power plants, mercury-based dental fillings and gold mining including abandoned waste sites.
          Exposure to mercury continues to be a matter of urgency for American Indian and Alaskan Native Tribal Nations because it severely impacts their subsistence rights and traditional diets, in particular through consumption of contaminated fish by women of childbearing age and pregnant women. The most serious impacts are on the developing nervous systems of unborn and nursing babies and young children.
          The Minamata Convention, which the US signed on to in 2013, provides guidance on the identification and remediation of contaminated sites, calls for a ban on new mercury mines and the phase-out of existing ones. It commits States to phase out and phase down mercury use in a number of products and medical/dental procedures, control emissions into air, land and water, and regulate small- scale gold mining. The Convention also addresses interim storage of mercury and its disposal once it becomes waste such as medical and e-waste.
          In the resolution, NCAI and its members 'request the United States take meaningful steps to ensure the full and effective implementation of the Minamata Convention on Mercury and take meaningful steps towards implementing it, in accordance with its Federal Trust and Treaty Responsibilities to Tribal Nations”; and “encourage Tribes to assess sources of mercury contamination on their lands and will work to reduce exposure to their Tribal communities and commit to work actively with local, state and federal governments to identify and remedy mercury contaminated sites'.
           Tribal Nations in California, Alaska, Nevada and South Dakota and other regions where gold mining was carried out extensively prior to 1950 are particularly impacted by ongoing exposure due to abandoned gold and mercury mine sites which were never adequately cleaned up. Mickey Gemmill, Chairman of Pit River Tribe in Northern California, advocated for the adoption of the resolution at NCAI, stating “the ongoing impacts of mercury have affected our people and our lands since the time of the Gold Rush, and it’s time to hold the government accountable for their attacks on our lands and people.”
          Rochelle Diver, an IITC delegate attending the NCAI Annual Conference, commended the adoption of the resolution [MKE-17-022]. She stated that “it’s important that Tribes work together to utilize UN Conventions that can assist in the protection of our lands, territories, health and livelihoods as well as our children and unborn generations. This is an area where greater participation by Tribes

could make a significant impact in ensuring that the US is held accountable to its Treaty, Trust and Human Rights obligations to Indigenous Nations”.
          For more information regarding Indigenous Peoples and the UN Minamata Convention on Mercury, log on to https:// health/mercury/ or  contact IITC’s San Francisco Office at 415.641.4482 or Rochelle Diver at"

Ocean River Institute stated, September 23, 2017, https:// guardians-and-deep-sea-canyon- rangers/c123422?utm_source=Deep%20Sea%20Canyon%20Rangers%20Defend%20the%20King%20 Scallops%20of%20Wester%20Ros&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=A%20Wealth%20of%20Ri ght%20Whales, " The Secretary of the Interior has recommended opening the NE Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument to commercial fishing.
Today, more than ever before, deep sea canyon rangers and seamount guardians are needed to make sure critical marine life feeding patterns are not disrupted, that forage fish like squid are not removed to the detriment of whales, tuna, and seabirds, and that whales are not entangled in fishing gear.
Only you can stop government from opening up the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument to oil and gas drilling and mineral mining. Act to protect sperm whales of the canyons, tripod fish of the seamounts and cold water corals throughout the national park area.
          Ocean River Institute was also campaigning in September 2017, op_dredging_destroying_Scotlands_inshore_sealife/?fhIlsgb&pv=1&utm_source=sharetools&utm_me dium=facebook&utm_campaign=petition-421255- Nicola_Sturgeon_First_Minister_Scottish_Government_Stop_scallop_dredging_destroying_Scotlands_ inshore_sealife&utm_term=hIlsgb%2Ben&utm_source=Deep+Sea+Canyon+Rangers+Defend+the+Ki ng+Scallops+of+Wester+Ros&utm_campaign=A+Wealth+of+Right+Whales&utm_medium=email, "Defend the King Scallops of Wester Ros, Scotland, " Tell Scotland's First Minister to stop inshore scallop dredging from destroying sealife.
Dredging close to shore, scallop dredgers have dragged over rocky bottoms and gravel beds where cod, haddock, Pollock and hake breed. They have destroyed maerl beds. Scallop dredging must be restricted to sandy floors where the scallops reside. These places tend to be in the middle of lochs and bays, furthest from the shore. Here scallops are fished sustainably and the catch is the most lucrative for fishermen. Once these areas are dragged, scallop dredgers should not be permitted to stray away on to other ocean floors.
          When a Scottish breeze blows and scallop dredgers would rather not go out three miles, they should stay safe in port to fathom a pub instead of destroying essential habitats for fish and prawn.
          The Ocean River Institute supports the coalition of Scottish groups that have come together exposing the chronic mismanagement of Scotland's inshore fisheries. Our work is only possible thanks to support from individuals like you."

News by Forest Stewardship Council Canada, Transmitted by Cision on September 19, 2017, "Canada to host meeting of global forestry leaders to plan future of responsible forest development, General Assembly of Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) in Vancouver to discuss crucial topics for sustainable forest practices around the world, First-ever global meeting of FSC in Canada to be held October 8-13. " reported, " The world's leading forest certification organization, the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), will hold its triennial global General Assembly in Canada for the first time from October 8-13, 2017, in Vancouver. 800 people from more than 80 countries, including leaders in global forestry, will be attending to focus on how to enhance responsible forestry worldwide.
          As FSC's highest decision making body, the General Assembly (GA) sets the direction for the organization for the coming years, with several important areas of responsible forest management, conservation and sustainability on the agenda. These include, among others, the protection of High Conservation Value areas such as Intact Forest Landscapes, ensuring the rights and participation of

Indigenous Peoples in forest development, and the future directions for forest restoration and conservation, all while permitting forests to continue to supply the vital products the world depends on for many purposes.
          "This is a essential time in the development of FSC and forest certification as we address the issues that are key to the success not just of FSC but the future of the world's forests," said Kim Carstensen, Director General of FSC, which is headquartered in Bonn, Germany. "We made a lot of progress at our last General Assembly in 2014 with the launch of several new initiatives. In Vancouver we will review how we have progressed and chart a clear path forward to continue our work."
          High Level Forum and side events
          One of the highlights of the General Assembly is the High Level Forum and side events. During three days, high-profile speakers from some of the most representative businesses, social and environmental advocacy groups will explore the role that FSC can play as a voluntary certification scheme for responsible forest management and how to incentivize consumer demand for sustainably sourced forest products.
          The first High Level Forum will be dedicated to The True Value of Forests, where participants will discuss the extent of the contribution of forests to society. The Forum's second day will be on Solid Wood, which will include discussions on identifying the market drivers for certified solid wood products regionally and internationally and the increasing importance of green building. The final High Level Forum debate, FSC in our Daily Lives, will explore how companies are leading the way in promoting sustainable consumer trends.
          Among the speakers participating in the High Level Forum are: Michael Green, a Vancouver based architect who is leading the use of wood in construction; Peter Lantin, President of the Haida Nation; and Sarah Chandler, Director of Operations, Product Development and Environmental Initiatives at Apple Inc.
          Other confirmed speakers at the General Assembly are Doug Donaldson, British Columbia Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resources Operations and Rural Development; Luc Blanchette, Quebec Minister of Forests, Wildlife and Parks; and Glenn Mason, Assistant Deputy Minister, Canadian Forest Services of Natural Resources Canada.
          Numerous side events at the General Assembly will also offer engaging debates on the current issues that directly touch upon world forestry. Canada's Boreal forest will be a highlight of these where participants will be able to understand the importance this biome has for Canada's forestry industry and the global environment.
          "We look forward to hosting delegates from around the world at the General Assembly in Vancouver and collaborating on vital decisions that will affect how our forest certification process will meet the requirement for responsible forestry in the 21st century," said François Dufresne, President, FSC Canada. "The collaborative process of FSC in addressing these issues with all stakeholders present is the key to our success."
          SIG, Green Sponsor of the 2017 General Assembly
          SIG, one of the world's leading solution providers for the food and beverage industry within the field of carton packs and filling technology, is the 2017 General Assembly's Green sponsor.
          Since 2009, SIG has led the industry in providing FSC-certified carton packs that can be traced back to source and in 2016, the company secured a sufficient supply of FSC-certified liquid packaging board to guarantee its customers the choice of including the FSC label on any of its carton packs. More than 60 billion SIG packs have now been sold with the FSC label, demonstrating the company's commitment to responsible sourcing
          The generous support of SIG will facilitate the attendance of FSC members who otherwise may not have the resources required to attend the assembly and exercise their membership rights.
          Additional support for the FSC General Assembly is provided by: Kingfisher, Fibria, IKEA, CMPC, TetraPak, International Paper, Kimberly-Clark, Precious Woods, Mondi, Lenzing, Klabin, Sappi, Arauco, Greenberg Traurig, Tembec, Arkhangelsk Pulp and Paper Mill, Air Canada, WWF, Sveaskog, National Wildlife Federation, Mercer and BWI.
          Full details about the General Assembly are available a t .
          About FSC and the FSC General Assembly

The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) is a global not-for-profit organization dedicated to promoting environmentally sound, socially beneficial and economically prosperous management of the world's forests. FSC was created in 1993 to help consumers and businesses identify products from well- managed forests and sets standards by which forests are certified, offering credible verification to people who are buying wood and wood products. Currently almost 200 million hectares and 33,000 companies worldwide are certified to FSC standards. For more information visi t
          At the GA, members decide through a governance structure that is unique to FSC where delegates from three chambers – environmental, social and economic – vote on motions that have previously been submitted by the members in a balanced system that allows for equal representation to all. This maintains the balance of voting power among different interests, ensuring effective, consensus-based solutions for forest management and the trade of forest products. For information about the GA, including participants, speakers, motions, and background about FSC, please visit:
          About FSC Canada
          FSC Canada is a vital element of FSC globally as the country with the largest area of certified forests, including more than 28% of global FSC-certified forests, a total of 55 million hectares (550,000 km2), equaling in size about half that of Ontario. 15.4% of Canada's forests are FSC-certified through 67 forest management certificates and 759 chain of custody certificates, representing more than a third (34%) of Canada's certified forests. FSC-certified forests are in every one of Canada's distinct forest regions, but almost half (45%) of the total area certified is located in Quebec. FSC Canada offices and personnel are located across Canada.
          SOURCE Forest Stewardship Council Canada
          For further information: Monika Patel, Director of Programs and Communications, FSC Canada, Phone: 416-778-5568 x26, Email:; Marc-André Dufresne, Capital-Image, Tél : 514-358-5560, Courriel :"

U.S. Activities

American Indian Higher Education Consortium, "AIHEC STATEMENT ON FY 2018 TRUMP ADMINISTRATION BUDGET RECOMMENDATIONS," MAY 25, 2017,
  2017.pdf, " The American Indian Higher Education Consortium (AIHEC) is extremely concerned that the Trump Administration’s Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 Budget includes inexplicable cuts to programs integral to the work and future of the nation’s Tribal Colleges and Universities (TCUs).
          The vast majority of TCUs in the United States are founded and chartered by their respective American Indian tribes, which hold a special legal relationship with the federal government, actualized by more than 400 treaties, several Supreme Court decisions, prior Congressional action, and the ceding of more than one billion acres of land to the federal government. The FY 2018 Budget released this week indicates a troubling unawareness or worse, disregard for the political status of American Indians with the federal government.
          The budget proposes cuts to a number of TCU programs that are already underfunded despite the significant results they yield. For example:
Cuts to the basic institutional operating budgets of the nation’s only tribally chartered postsecondary career and technical institutions (Navajo Technical University in Crownpoint, NM and United Tribes Technical College in Bismarck, ND), as well as the Department of the Interior - Bureau of Indian Education’s postsecondary institutions (Haskell Indian Nations University in Lawrence, KS and the Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute in Albuquerque, NM); and
          Complete elimination of two small but vitally important grant programs: TCU Essential Community Facilities grant program in USDA-Rural Development (which would be consolidated with a larger rural community facilities program) and the NASA-TCU Program, which would presumably be eliminated if NASA’s education program is eliminated. These programs help the TCUs to offer safe

and modern campus/community facilities and vitally-needed STEM education, internships, and career development for their students.
          Additionally, several other higher education programs are targeted for substantial cuts that would greatly impact the TCUs, including of deep cuts to TRIO programs, GEAR UP, Federal Work- Study, and the elimination of Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (SEOG).
          AIHEC cannot understate the devastating domino effect such cuts will have on low-income students and underserved rural communities, including TCUs and reservation communities. Conversely, we must underscore the exponential impact that retaining the relatively small federal investment in our institutions returns in terms economic growth in our communities and reduced demand for social service programs.
          Thankfully, Congress holds 'the power of the purse.' During the final negotiations of the FY 2017 appropriations cycle, the legislative branch signaled their support for the TCUs by rejecting some of the equally damaging proposals championed by the new Trump Administration. We will continue to work with Congress to reaffirm those efforts and maintain and grow the federal investment in the nation’s Tribal Colleges and Universities, an investment that is proven to be a sound and moral one."

The National Congress of American Indians (NCIA), at its mid-year meeting in Connecticut , adopted a resolution encouraging American Indian and Alaska Native families who had children who never returned from boarding school to provide information about that to present to the United Nations, asking that body to call on the U.S. government to provide a full accounting of what happened to those children. Attempts to find this information under the Freedom of Information act by NABS, NARF and IITC have been unsuccessful(https:// content/uploads/Tribes-Calling-for-Testimony-for-Boarding-School-Violations-to-Take-to-UN_6-28- 17-Press-Release.pdf).

"NCAI Opposes Executive Action on the Reduction of National Monuments," Published on December 4, 2017, the-reduction-of-national-monuments, commented, " NCAI opposes President Trump’s efforts to reduce two monuments that hold tribal sacred places. Today, President Trump issued Presidential Proclamations reducing the size of the Bears Ears and Grand Staircase national monuments in Utah. These monuments were initially designated as monuments to ensure that tribal and American citizens would have use of these significant landscapes for generations to come. The National Congress of American Indians stands by the efforts of all effected Tribal Governments and local communities who are determined to protect these sacred places in their entirety.
          The Bears Ears National Monument was decreased by 85% removing protections from 1,148,000 acres. Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument was reduced by 47% removing protections from 896,000 acres. With the two Presidential Proclamations signed today, National Monument protections were removed from over 2 million acres of land.
          “The original intent of the Antiquities Act was to protect our tribal sacred sites and the cultural objects in those sites. The history of our indigenous ancestors lives in these sacred places. Today’s action to reduce Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante endangers our freedom of religion, our histories and our communities,” stated Jefferson Keel, President of NCAI. “We stand with the Tribes of the Bears Ears Inter-Tribal Coalition as well as the Tribes impacted by other Monument designations.”
          Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante were both designated under the original intent of the Antiquities Act. The Antiquities Act granted power to the President to create national monuments to protect Tribal sacred sites and cultural objects. The Act does not grant the President the authority to reduce and revoke the boundaries of national monuments as was done today.
          NCAI’s membership is steadfast in its full support of all Tribes to protect their ancient objects and histories by National Monument protections. As the Administration continues the review process of national monuments, NCAI remains working to ensure all sacred sites remain protected.
          View NCAI resolutions in support of National Monument designations EC-15-002, MOH-17- 006 and MKE-17-057 and NCAI’s  comments submitted to the Department of the Interior at: rdDfnriqmFoh_NCAI_Comments_for_DOI-2017-0002-0001%20(1).pdf."

"The National Congress of American Indians and the Native American Finance Officers Association Oppose the Tax Cuts  and Jobs Act in the House and the Senate," NCAI, Published on November 16, 2017, american-indians-and-the-native-american-finance-officers-association-oppose-the-tax-cuts-and-jobs- act-in-the-house-and-the-senate, commented, " The National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) and the Native American Finance Officers Association (NAFOA) oppose the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act—both the House bill and the Senate Finance Committee bill.
          Indian Country has pressed for more than a quarter century for Congress to address tax code provisions that treat tribes inequitably and hinder economic growth in Indian Country
. Tax reform can be a once in a generation opportunity to uphold the federal trust obligation by helping tribes build stronger economies, create jobs, and deploy critical infrastructure. NCAI and NAFOA have worked tirelessly in recent years to educate Congress on tribal tax provisions which would help stimulate tribal economic growth, but these provisions are not present in either version of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.
          NCAI and NAFOA view it as deeply regrettable that neither the House nor the Senate bill takes seriously Indian Country’s priorities for tax reform. With respect to tribal nations, unless tribal provisions are included, the current tax reform legislation amounts to little more than a
           $1.5 trillion increase in the federal deficit over the next ten years. This deficit increase will inevitably create pressure to cut federal programs and services that are extremely important to tribal communities. Deficit-financed tax cuts that lead to austerity budget cuts would affect all Americans, but would disproportionately impact American Indians and Alaska Natives who rely on federal funding of the trust responsibility as well as social programs.
Accordingly, NCAI and NAFOA oppose the House and Senate versions of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. NCAI and NAFOA call on tribal governments to oppose these bills as well and contact their Congressional delegations to urge them to vote NO on the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act."

"Safety & Victim Service Passes in the House Appropriations Committee," NACI, Published on July 13, 2017, , commented, "Today, the House Appropriations Committee adopted an amendment offered by Representatives Betty McCollum (D—MN) and Tom Cole (R—OK) that would support tribal public safety and victim services programs. The amendment was adopted by voice vote with overwhelming bi-partisan support.
          'The McCollum-Cole Amendment comes as great news to tribal nations across the country,' said NCAI President Brian Cladoosby. 'We are so pleased that the Appropriations Committee recognized the appalling unmet need in tribal communities and took an important step toward ensuring that crime victims in tribal communities have access to the justice and services they deserve.'
          Despite federal and tribal government attempts to reduce violence on Indian lands, reservations continue to face staggering rates of violent crime and victimization. A recent DOJ study found that more than four in five American Indian and Alaska Native adults have experienced some form of violence in their lifetime. Among American Indian and Alaska Native women, 55.5 percent have experienced physical violence by intimate partners in their lifetime, and more than half (56.1 percent) have experienced sexual violence. DOJ also found that Native victims are more likely to be injured as a result of their violent victimization, more likely to need services, and are significantly less likely to have access to services compared to their non-Native counterparts.
The McCollum-Cole Amendment is an amendment to the FY18 Commerce, Justice, Science Appropriations (CJS) bill. Without this amendment, the bill would have resulted in cuts of 43% to Department of Justice (DOJ) tribal justice system funding over FY16 levels. This would have had

a devastating impact on DOJ programs that support tribal police departments, courts, juvenile justice, detention center construction, and other important public safety programs in Indian Country. The Amendment also created a 5% tribal funding stream from the Crime Victims Fund, the primary federal source for crime victim services, which currently includes formula funding for state and territorial governments, but not tribal governments. The House bill includes $4.6 billion in outlays from the Crime Victims Fund, and the amendment adopted today directs 5% of that funding to tribal governments.
With its adoption by the House Appropriations Committee today, NCAI hopes that similar language will be included in the Senate bill, thereby strengthening the future of Indian Country by addressing crime on tribal lands through restoration of tribal access to safety and justice and improvements in tribal public safety funding, strategy, and planning."

"National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) President Jefferson Keel Issues Statement on the White House Ceremony Honoring Native American Code Talkers,' Published on November 27, 2017, president-jefferson-keel-issues-statement-on-the-white-house-ceremony-honoring-native-american- code-talkers, commented, "On November 27, 2017, the National Congress of American Indians President Jefferson Keel issued the following statement:
           'We regret that the President’s use of the name Pocahontas as a slur to insult a political adversary is overshadowing the true purpose of today’s White House ceremony,' stated NCAI President Jefferson Keel, a decorated U.S. Army officer and Vietnam War combat veteran. 'Today was about recognizing the remarkable courage and invaluable contributions of our Native code talkers. That’s who we honor today and every day – the three code talkers present at the White House representing the 10 other elderly living code talkers who were unable to join them, and the hundreds of other code talkers from the Cherokee, Choctaw, Comanche, Lakota, Meskwaki, Mohawk, Navajo, Tlingit, and other tribes who served during World Wars I and II. We also honor the service and bravery of all of our veterans and those currently serving from Indian Country. Native people serve in the Armed Forces at a higher rate than any other group in the country, and have served in every war in this nation’s history.
          And we honor the contributions of Pocahontas, a hero to her people, the Pamunkey Indian Tribe in Virginia, who reached across uncertain boundaries and brought people together. Once again, we call upon the President to refrain from using her name in a way that denigrates her legacy.'
          Please see NCAI’s statement issued on May 3, 2017 on President Trump’s use of the name Pocahontas at: derogatory-use-of-pocahontas-name-in-political-attack."

"Top Civil Rights Organizations Urge Media Not to Use Washington NFL Team’s R-word Name on Thanksgiving," NCAI, Published on November 21, 2017, washington-nfl-team-s-r-word-name-on-thanksgiving, commented, "A coalition of the country’s most prominent advocacy and civil rights organizations today called on media organizations to refrain from using the offensive R-word name of the Washington NFL team during their Thanksgiving Day coverage. The Washington franchise will take on the New York Giants in a high-profile, nationally broadcast game on Thursday.
          Endorsees of the just-released letter include: NAACP, National Urban League, Advancement Project, Asian and Pacific Islander American Health Forum, Demos, PICO National Network, Race Forward, UnidosUS, National Congress of American Indians, Oneida Indian Nation and Change the Mascot.
'Thanksgiving is often the only major American holiday that brings Native people and their history into the national conversation. Using the holiday to promote the Washington team’s derogatory name will further marginalize Native Americans who have already experienced histories of oppression and violence,” the letter states. “Media organizations can do their jobs by reporting on the team, but also refrain from using the slur and denigrating Native people.”

The letter goes on to highlight the substantial and tangible destruction caused by the use of the R-word. It points to social science research proving that such mascots and slurs lower self-esteem and mood among Native American youth, and also increase negative attitudes towards Native Americans among other races.
          'In light of all of the evidence of destruction caused by the R-word’s use, we are hopeful that you will pledge to honor this modest request,” the letter continues. “At a time when our political debate is so polarized, media organizations should be able to agree to not explicitly promote a racial slur.” Today’s plea to media organizations is part of Change the Mascot’s grassroots movement to educate the public about the damaging effects on Native Americans arising from the continued use of the R-word. This civil and human rights movement has helped reshape the debate surrounding the Washington  team’s  name  and  brought  the  issue  to  the  forefront  of  social  consciousness. Since its launch, the campaign has continually garnered support from a diverse coalition of prominent advocates including elected officials from both parties, Native American tribes, sports icons, leading journalists and news publications, civil and human rights organizations and religious leaders. A full list of Change the Mascot supporters can be found at:
          The full text of today’s letter to media organizations can be found at:

"National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) Joins Assembly of First Nations (AFN) in Calling for the Development of a North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) Indigenous Chapter," NCAI, Published on October 18, 2017, assembly-of-first-nations-afn-in-calling-for-the-development-of-a-north-american-free-trade- agreement-nafta-indigenous-chapter, Commented, "On Tuesday, October 18, 2017, the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) membership overwhelmingly moved to support Assembly of First Nations (AFN) National Chief Perry Bellegarde’s request that NCAI join AFN in working to establish an Indigenous Chapter in the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
          National Chief Bellegarde was addressing NCAI at the NCAI 74th Annual Convention & Marketplace in Milwaukee, WI.
          'I thank the National Congress of American Indians for passing a unanimous motion supporting in principle an Indigenous Peoples Chapter in a renegotiated NAFTA and supporting our work to protect Indigenous rights,” said Bellegarde. “This is a strong show of solidarity by the First Peoples of Turtle Island and a strong message to the nation-states involved in the negotiations. Our inherent rights, Treaty rights and international rights in the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples must be respected in the negotiations and in any final agreement.' AFN National Chief Bellegarde spoke passionately to the crowd of tribal leaders during the
          NCAI Second General Assembly about working across the borders that were created by others and separated our peoples.
          'It is an honor to work with our brothers and sisters in Canada to ensure Indigenous voices are a part of the NAFTA negotiations,' said NCAI President Brian Cladoosby. 'NCAI member tribes see our collaborative work for inclusion of an Indigenous Peoples Chapter in NAFTA as a necessity to protect the rights of American Indian Tribes, Canadian First Nations, and the Indigenous peoples of Mexico.' NCAI members will vote to approve a resolution entitled 'Supporting the Inclusion of an Indigenous Chapter in any Renegotiated North American Free Trade Agreement (MKE-17-053)' on
          Friday, October 20, 2017 during the Sixth General Assembly.

WDC and Partner Groups Demand US and Canada Act to Save North Atlantic Right Whales," 0ctober 20, 2017 , http://wdc- F23F30FEDED/A01551233679361B9A8E73400EDACAB4, *** Two and a half weeks after WDC

and its conservation partners issued a Notice of Intent to Sue the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) for failing to adequately protect right whales, NMFS released a revised species review report with proposed recommended actions to prevent the extinction of NA right  whales. WDC and its partners are currently reviewing the report and the associated recommendations to ensure they address the urgency of the current right whale crisis .
~Regina Asmutis-Silvia, Executive Director-North America
Read about the original intent to sue below:
          WDC and its conservation and animal-protection partners sought action by the United States and Canada to prevent painful, deadly entanglements in fishing gear that threaten the critically endangered North Atlantic right whale. In letters to Canadian officials and the U.S. National Marine Fisheries Service, the groups demanded action to reduce risks to these imperiled whales. North Atlantic right whales, one of the world’s most endangered mammals with fewer than 500 individuals remaining on Earth, lost nearly 3 percent of their population this year.
'Right whales risk spiraling toward extinction if we don’t protect them from deadly fishing gear,' said Kristen Monsell, a senior attorney at the Center for Biological Diversity.'This has been a tragic year for a species already teetering on the brink. U.S. and Canadian officials need to do everything they can to prevent gear entanglements and the slow, painful deaths they can cause.'
          The groups say the Fisheries Service must fulfill its obligations under the Endangered Species Act and Marine Mammal Protection Act to review protective measures for the species and adopt additional protective measures to prevent further entanglements. The demands were made in a legal notice that gives the agency at least 60 days to correct the violations before the groups can file a lawsuit."

          MINE, Cultural Survival, August 08, 2017, https:// nation-files-injunction-halt-drilling-mine, reported, “Our people are understandably angry, and cannot believe that BC would approve more destruction in an area of such spiritual and cultural importance for us, and in Xeni Gwet’in’s trapline, an area with one of Canada’s only Court Declarations of Aboriginal Rights. We are confident that the BC Supreme Court will hear our concerns and grant an injunction against any drilling activity by Taseko. The BC NDP have inherited this mess from the previous government, and we hope they will act to make things right.” -Chief Roger William, Chief of the Xeni Gwet’in First Nations Government and Vice-Chair of the Tsilhqot’in National Government
          On July 31st, 2017, the Tsilhqot’in Nation went to the BC Supreme Court to challenge the drilling permits that were recently issued to Taseko Mines Limited, a Canadian mining company who has been pushing for a copper mine in the area. The Tsilhqot’in National Government (TNG) filed a petition to rescind the permit due to its neglect of the responsibility to consult and accommodate the Tsilhqot’in Nation before approval. Additionally, TNG filed a Notice of Civil Claim against the permits, noting that it infringes upon the Tsilhqot’in Nation’s right to the land for hunting, trapping and fishing. Finally, TNG asked the BC Supreme Court for an injunction to halt the work that Taseko is attempting to do at the site. The decision on the injunction is expected on August 14th, and, until then, Taseko has agreed to halt drilling.
          This battle between the Tsilhqot’in Nation and Taseko Mines Limited has been ongoing for two decades. The company has been attempting to construct a mine that would produce 70,000 tons of ore per day for 20 years. However, this plan has been rejected by the BC government twice before, in 2012 and 2014, as a result of the opposition and strong organization by the Tsilhqot’in Nation and the general public. In 2014, the government upheld that the area in question is Tsilhqot’in lands, and that any economic development that would take place on these lands must have the consent of the First Nation.
Regardless of this federal decision, on July 14th, 2017, a permit was issued to Taseko Mines, authorizing Taseko to clear lands, excavate test pits, drill 122 holes, and construct roads. The permit was sanctioned while the Indigenous Peoples of the Tsilhqot’in Nation were evacuating their homes due to wildfires raging across their lands.

Taseko is looking engage in extensive, destructive exploratory work in the area. This includes 76 km of road and trail, 122 drill holes, 367 test pits (dug by an excavator), and 20 km of seismic lines in an area of profound cultural importance to the Tsilhqot’in Nation. On Friday, July 28th, the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency wrote Taseko Mines Ltd., declaring that the drilling program is illegal under the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, 2012. But whether the provincial government and Taseko will respect these laws is to be seen. Sustained community organizing and public opposition to the project is essential to implement court decisions.
          Indeed, public opposition to the project, in solidarity with the Tsilhqot’in, has been very strong: the government decision in 2014 to recognize the Tsilhqot’in Nation’s title to their lands was influenced significantly by the public objection to the New Prosperity Mine project. This type of public action has grown over the past few years and has had a direct effect on the ways in which the BC government has acknowledged the rights of the Tsilhqot’in Nation.
          Now, the Tsilhqot’in are again asking for public support against the mine.
          The Tsilhqot’in Nation in British Colombia, Canada, issued an urgent request for people around the world to join them in the fight to protect their home, lands, and sacred waters from a gold and copper mine that would turn the sacred Teztan Biny or ‘Fish Lake’ in the heart of Tsilhqot’in territory, into a tailings pond for toxic waste.
The lake is home to 85,000 rainbow trout, and provides clean water for drinking, irrigation, and millions of salmon which supports a thriving ecosystem and economy for the region. Tsilhqot’in Elder Sonny Lulua explained 'There is so much at stake for us….It hurts our culture when it changes like this or when we can’t go in there. It is a threat to our survival. [That area] was made for us to live off of, for hunting and trapping and medicines'. (from affidavit, Lulua Affidavit, Ex. “A”, para. 11)
          The Tsilhqot’in National Government has asked people around the world to hold up a feather to demonstrate your solidarity with the fight to #SaveFishLake.
          'The eagle feather is for the truth, it’s for protection, it’s for guidance, it’s for courage. So we pray to the creator through this eagle feather. We ask everyone to come together with the strength of the eagle feather, in unity, to protect our lands and resources.' - Chief Charlene Belleau"

          EARS NATIONAL MONUMENT," Cultural Survival,
          December 6, 2017, https:// decision-reverse-bears-ears-national-monument, commented, " President Trump illegal decision to shrink the Bears Ears Monument on December 5, 2017, reversing the Obama administration’s designation of Bears Ears as a National Monument in Utah, is an attack on Tribal sovereignty and self-determination and a measure that is continuing the Trump administration’s discriminatory treatment of Native Peoples in the United States. Trump’s recent decisions include issuing permits to the Dakota Access and Keystone XL pipelines, the revoking the executive order to protect the Bering Sea, and the recent opening of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge for oil and gas leases, demonstrate the blatant disregard for Native Peoples’ rights.
          Bears Ears has been home to Native Peoples since time immemorial and is a place of cultural and spiritual significance for the Navajo, Hopi, Ute, Ute Mountain Ute, and Zuni Peoples. The five Tribal governments, in unity, worked hard with the Obama administration to secure formal protections under US law for the creation of a National Monument, protecting the 100,000 plus structures, sites, and objects found on the land and barring extractive industries from operating in the area. The Obama administration also guaranteed hunting, fishing, gathering and grazing rights of Native People with the creation of the National Monument.
Trump’s executive order to shrink the monument by 1.1 million acres, more than 85 percent, degrades the agreement reached between the Tribes and the federal government. Under the US Antiquities Act, the president may create national monuments, not modify or revoke existing monuments. Only Congress has this power. No president has ever revoked and replaced a national monument before.
          The Trump administration failed to meaningfully consult Tribal governments and has violated

international standards like the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples which the Obama administration endorsed in 2010, guaranteeing Indigenous Peoples the right to free, prior and informed consent in matters concerning them. We are encouraged by the actions taken by the five Tribes to sue the President and Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, and hold faith for justice to prevail on this matter.
          We stand in solidarity.
          Suzanne Benally (Santa Clara Tewa), Cultural Survival Executive Director."

The International Treaty Council (IITC) hosted the 2017 Thanksgiving Sunrise Gathering to Celebrate Survival and Share Truth in History on Alcatraz Island, CA, November 23, 2017. Participants came from many parts of the world (https:// release-international-indian-treaty-council-hosts-2017-indigenous-peoples-thanksgiving-sunrise- gathering-celebrate-survival-share-truth-history/),
           IITC Sponsored the 2017 Southwest Indigenous Foodways Gathering and AZ Small-Scale Producers Forum, December 6-9, in Ajo, AZ (https:// indigenous-foodways-gathering-az-small-scale-producers-forum/).
           IITC with the Alaska Community Action on Toxics and Chickaloon Traditional Village Council held an Event: Stories, Struggles and Songs: Environmental Reproductive Health And Justice: A Call To Action By Indigenous Women, on August 3, 2017, at the First United Methodist Church, 725 W 9th Ave, Anchorage AK. (https:// women-anchorage-ak/).

American Indians and allies protested in Santa Fe, NM, September 8, 2017, against an annual pageant celebrating the return of the Spanish conquistador Don Diego de Vargas to New Mexico, in 1692, after the Spanish had been thrown out by the Pueblo Revolt of 1680 (Morgan Lee, "Santa Fe protestors stand ground against trespassing charge," NFIC, September 2017).

On Thanksgiving day, 2017, American Indians from around New England gathered in Plymouth, MA, where the Pilgrims landed in 1620, for a National Day of Mourning ("Native Americans mark holiday with mourning in New England," Albuquerque Journal, November 24, 2017).

Remember the Removal is an annual 950-mile bike ride commemorating the hardships of removal in the Cherokee Trail of Tears along the northern route that Cherokees were forced to take from Geoprgia to Oklahoma. It was first organized in 1984, and has been an annual event since 2009 (Melanie D.G. Kaplan, "In Their Footsteps," National Parks, winter 2018).

Hawai'i People's Fund reported in its Kauwela 2017 newsletter that among the grants it had recently awarded were to Mounakea Education & Awareness that works to raise the awareness of communities in Hawai'i and beyond to the spiritual, historical, cultural, environmental and political significance of Maunakea and all sacred places.

In Albuquerque, NM, the Assembly of Native American Voices ( ANAV) was formed by urban Indian people from all walks of life representing a wide spectrum of social and economic sectors. ANAV emerged from the January 2016 Urban Indian Summit, in Albuquerque, co-hosted by the American Indian Voters Alliance, Americans for Indian Opportunity and Native American Community Academy. ANAV works as a community based organization to meet the cultural, policy and resource needs of the urban Indian community Its vision is "to build a healthy, vibrant urban Indian community that is valued for its resilience and contribution to the community." For information go to:

In New Mexico, the Native American Voters Alliance has been active on political issues. It has planned a Legislative Strategy and Informational Session for Native American Advocates on

acting on issues before the New Mexico state legislature on January 23, 2017. For information, call: (505)246-1819.

The Alliance of Indigenous Social Work Students "promotes unity among students and supports the cultural, social and academic needs of Indigenous Social Work Students at the NMHU Albuquerque and Rio Rancho Centers." For information contact: Natalie Nicotine, President: or Diane Tsoodle-Nelson, Vice President:

Among the so called "conservative" groups that have taken stands against tribal interests, the Goldwater Institute, of Phoenix, AZ, has been calling for the repeal of the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) (Rebecca Claren, "'Our Children Have a Bounty on Their Heads," The Nation, April 24- May 1, 2017).

International Activities

"New report exposes widespread abuse funded by big conservation organizations," Survival International, September 25, 2017, https://, reported, " A new Survival International report details widespread and systematic human rights abuses in the Congo Basin, by wildlife guards funded by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and other big conservation organizations.
The report documents serious instances of abuse between 1989 and the present day in Cameroon, the Republic of Congo, and the Central African Republic (CAR) by guards funded and equipped by WWF and the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), the parent organization of New York’s Bronx zoo.
           It lists more than 200 instances of abuse since 1989, including pouring hot wax onto exposed skin, beating, and maiming with red-hot machetes. These incidents are likely just a tiny fraction of the full picture of systematic and ongoing violence, beatings, torture and even death.
          As well as these especially cruel incidents, the report also documents the forms of harassment that have become part of everyday life for many people, including threats, and the destruction of food, tools and personal belongings
          Read the full report at: survive.pdf.
          As well as Survival, over the past three decades, numerous independent experts and NGOs have raised concerns about these abuses. These have included NGOs like Greenpeace, Oxfam, UNICEF, Global Witness, Forest Peoples Programme, and research specialists from University College London, the University of Oxford, Durham University, and Kent University.
          WWF and WCS have even partnered with several logging companies, despite evidence that their activities are unsustainable, and have not had the consent of tribal peoples as required by international law and their own stated policies.
One Bayaka man said: 'A wildlife guard asked me to kneel down. I said: 'Never, I could never do that.' He said: 'If you don’t get down on your knees I’m going to beat you.'
          A Baka woman said: 'They took me to the middle of the road and tied my hands with rubber cord. They forced my hands behind my back and cut me with their machete.'
          'They started kicking me all over my body… I had my baby with me. The child had just been born three days before.'
          Tribal peoples have been dependent on and managed their environments for millennia. Their lands are not wilderness. Evidence proves that tribal peoples are better at looking after their environment than anyone else.
          But big conservation organizations like WWF are partnering with industry and tourism and destroying the environment’s best allies. Now tribal people are accused of 'poaching' because they hunt to feed their families. And they face arrest and beatings, torture and death, while big game trophy hunters are encouraged.
          Survival’s Director Stephen Corry said: “This shocking report lays out, in detail, the abuse and

persecution that “conservation” has brought the indigenous and tribal peoples of the Congo Basin. These are just the cases that have been documented, it’s impossible to imagine there aren’t a lot more which remain hidden.
          'The big conservation organizations should admit that their activities in the region have been catastrophic, both for the environment and for the tribal peoples who guarded these forests for so long.
          'WWF and WCS supporters might ask these organizations how they could have let this situation carry on for so long – and what they’re going to do now to make sure it stops.'
'Pygmy' is an umbrella term commonly used to refer to the hunter-gatherer peoples of the Congo Basin and elsewhere in Central Africa. The word is considered pejorative and avoided by some tribespeople, but used by others as a convenient and easily recognized way of describing themselves."

"Survival–WWF OECD talks break down over tribal consent," Survival International, September 5, 2017, https:/ /, reported, " The landmark mediation talks between Survival and the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) over breaches of OECD guidelines for multinational corporations have broken down over the issue of tribal peoples’ consent.
          Survival had asked WWF to agree to secure the Baka 'Pygmies’' consent for how the conservation zones on their lands in Cameroon were managed in the future, in line with the organization’s own indigenous peoples policy.
           WWF refused, at which point Survival decided there was no purpose continuing the talks.
          Survival lodged the complaint in 2016, citing the creation of conservation zones on Baka land without their consent, and WWF’s repeated failure to take action over serious human rights abuses by wildlife guards it trains and equips.
          It is the first time a conservation organization has been the subject of a complaint under the OECD guidelines. The resulting mediation was held in Switzerland, where WWF is headquartered.
          WWF has been instrumental in the creation of several national parks and other protected areas in Cameroon on the land of the Baka and other rainforest tribes. Its own policy states that any such projects must have the free, prior and informed consent of those affected.
          A Baka man told Survival in 2016: “[The anti-poaching squad] beat the children as well as an elderly woman with machetes. My daughter is still unwell. They made her crouch down and they beat her everywhere – on her back, on her bottom, everywhere, with a machete.”
          Another man said: “They told me to carry my father on my back. I walked, they beat me, they beat my father. For three hours. Every time I cried they would beat me, until I fainted and fell to the ground.”
          Background briefing
          Survival first raised its concerns about WWF’s projects on Baka land in 1991. Since then, Baka and other local people have repeatedly testified to arrest and beatings, torture and even death at the hands of WWF-funded wildlife guards.
          The OECD is the Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development. It publishes guidelines on corporate responsibility for multinationals, and provides a complaint mechanism where the guidelines have been violated.
          The complaint was lodged with the Swiss national contact point for the OECD, as WWF has its international headquarters in Switzerland. Talks took place in the Swiss capital, Bern, between representatives of WWF and Survival.
          The principle of Free, Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC) is the bedrock of international law on indigenous peoples’ rights. It has significant implications for big conservation organizations, which often operate on tribal peoples’ land without having secured their consent.
          Tribal peoples like the Baka have been dependent on and managed their environments for millennia. Contrary to popular belief, their lands are not wilderness. Evidence proves that tribal peoples are better at looking after their environment than anyone else. Despite this, WWF has alienated them from its conservation efforts in the Congo Basin.
          The Baka, like many tribal peoples across Africa, are accused of “poaching” because they hunt

to feed their families. They are denied access to large parts of their ancestral land for hunting, gathering, and sacred rituals. Many are forced to live in makeshift encampments on roadsides where health standards are very poor and alcoholism is rife.
          Meanwhile, WWF has partnered with logging corporations such as Rougier, although these companies do not have the Baka’s consent to log the forest, and the logging is unsustainable. Survival’s Director Stephen Corry said: 'The outcome of these talks is dismaying but not really surprising. Conservation organizations are supposed to ensure that the ‘free, prior and informed consent’ of those whose lands they want to control has been obtained. It’s been WWF’s official policy
          for the last twenty years.
          “But such consent is never obtained in practice, and WWF would not commit to securing it for their work in the future.
          " It’s now clear that WWF has no intention of seeking, leave alone securing, the proper consent of those whose lands it colludes with governments in stealing. We’ll have to try other ways to get WWF to abide by the law, and its own policy.'”

"Defenders of the Land & Idle No More Condemn Government of Canada’s 10 Principles," Defenders of the Land & Idle No More Network, August 25, 2017, stated, " When the Government of Canada’s released its Principles Respecting the Government of Canada’s Relationship with Indigenous Peoples last month, they said they would “ form a foundation for transforming how the federal government partners with and supports Indigenous peoples and governments.” But the analysis by Indigenous representatives from Defenders of the Land and Idle No More suggest that the federal governments " 10 Principles" are a continuation of settler attempts to eliminate Aboriginal Title and the pre- existing right of sovereignty and self-determination; as well as, a fair and just, interpretation of historic Treaties.
          In a detailed 12-page Condemnation of Canada’s “ 10 Principles” Undermining International Minimum Standards Regarding the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Defenders of the Land and Idle No More show how the government document contains familiar government double-speak, where they acknowledge “ self-determination” on one hand but then put it squarely under the umbrella of “ European assertion of sovereignty” on the other. Regarding the implementation of the UN Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples’, the government says it will only implement a Canadian version. This 12 page analysis contends that if the government does not implement UNDRIP as it stands, it is in violation of international human rights laws.
          According to the Indigenous analysis, the “ Trudeau government is advancing a racist, colonial position, which is inconsistent with the minimum human rights standards contained in the Articles of UNDRIP.” The government’s aim, they say, “ is to domesticate Indigenous Peoples and international law, both in violation of international legal standards.
          Contacts: Russell Diabo, Cell: (613)296-0110 Spokesperson, Defenders of the Land Network; Janice Makokis,        Cell: (780)915-0310 Spokesperson, Idle No More Network/.

Defenders of the Land & Idle No More Networks stated, September 12, 2017, “ 10th ANNIVERSARY OF THE UN DECLARATION ON THE RIGHTS OF INDIGENOUS PEOPLES - NO REASON FOR CANADA TO CELEBRATE!", "September 13th 2017 marks the
           10th anniversary of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples ( UNDRIP), a universal legal framework, which acknowledges the inherent collective human rights of the approximately 370 million Indigenous Peoples worldwide. Whilst a few celebrations of this anniversary are taking place in Canada organized together with establishment organizations who do not represent the grassroots Indigenous Peoples who are the proper title and rights holders, it is questionable, if the country has anything to celebrate about. According to the latest periodic report of the UN Committee on the Elimination of all Forms of Racial Discrimination (UN CERD), Indigenous Peoples in Canada are still facing systematic racial discrimination in the enjoyment of their inherent rights.

Thirty years after Indigenous representatives first came to the United Nations in 1977, the General Assembly finally adopted the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) on September 13 , 2007. Indigenous Peoples around the world celebrated this event as a milestone of their continuous efforts to have their rights acknowledged on an international level.
          The UNDRIP is the first UN document which entitles Indigenous Peoples not only to general human rights but also specific collective rights as Peoples, particularly concerning their right to self- determination, identity, culture as well as their Indigenous lands and resources.
          Today Indigenous Peoples are an ever-growing presence at the international level and 10 years after its adoption, some countries have incorporated the declaration into their national law to set minimum standards for their relationship with Indigenous Peoples.
          Regrettably so far, Canada has not appropriately implemented its obligations and duties towards Indigenous Peoples as laid down in the UNDRIP, which has already been criticized by many UN bodies and Committees, most recently by the UN CERD in August 2017.
In fact, Canada was one of only four countries that actually voted against the UNDRIP at the General Assembly in 2007. Only after immense international political pressure did the Canadian government endorse the declaration in 2010, but with severe reservations.
          In May 2016, Canadian federal Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development, Carolyn Bennett, announced the full support of the Declaration “ without qualification” at the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues. However, she immediately contradicted this in her next sentence by stating that the government intends to “ adopt and implement the declaration in accordance with the Canadian Constitution.” She therefore tried to subjugate international law to lesser national standards. This is in clear violation of any understanding of international law, according to which national laws and policies should only be passed if they conform with international law and not vice versa.
          The recent periodic report from the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD), condemned racism and rights violations encountered by Aboriginal Peoples in Canada, echoing Indigenous Nations who made submissions to the committee on their experiences of racial discrimination since the past 150 years of colonial policy and law.
           The UN CERD committee is “ deeply concerned” by Canada’s continuous violations of the land rights of Indigenous Peoples “ in particular environmentally destructive decisions for resource development which affect their lives and territories continue to be undertaken without the free, prior and informed consent of the Indigenous Peoples, resulting in breaches of treaty obligations and international human rights law.”
          Collective land rights of Indigenous Peoples present a cornerstone of the UNDRIP, according to which Indigenous Peoples enjoy the right to own, use, develop and control their traditional lands, territories and resources as key aspect of their culture and identity.
          The CERD report criticizes that for Indigenous Peoples in Canada “ costly, time consuming and ineffective litigation is often the only remedy in place of seeking free, prior and informed consent” and is highly concerned that “ permits have been issued and construction has commenced at the Site C dam, despite vigorous opposition of Indigenous Peoples affected by this project”. The Committee urges Canada to " immediately suspend all permits and approvals for the construction of the Site C dam" in British Colombia
and to " incorporate the free, prior and informed consent principle in the Canadian regulatory system".
          Additionally, the Committee is alarmed at the continued high rates of violence against Indigenous women and girls, urging Canada to take immediate action. The report also found that despite its previous recommendations and multiple decisions by the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal, “ less money is reportedly provided for child and family services to Indigenous children than in other communities, and that this gap continues to grow”. According to the UNDRIP, states must “ take measures, in conjunction with Indigenous Peoples, to ensure that Indigenous women and children enjoy the full protection and guarantees against all forms of violence and discrimination.” However, systematic discrimination of Indigenous women and children remains and Canada has failed so far in addressing root causes of this ongoing violation.

As part of Montréal's 375th anniversary, a three-day event is organized in collaboration with the Montreal city government to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the UNDRIP, Indigenous cultures and diversities in collaboration with establishment organizations which do not represent grassroots Indigenous Peoples who are the proper title and rights holders. While Indigenous Peoples, their rights, cultures and artists should be promoted and celebrated, cocktail receptions, acknowledging talks and free concerts are by far not enough. The UN CERD report clearly shows that Canada needs to do much more to address its long history of racial discrimination against Indigenous Peoples and to acknowledge their inherent, internationally recognized rights as Peoples.
For more information contact: Russell Diabo: Cell: 613-296-0110 Janice Makokis: Cell: 780- 915-0310”

"Cultural Survival Stands in Solidarity with the Citizens of Guatemala," Cultural Survival, August 29, 2017. https:// guatemala, commented, Cultural Survival stands in solidarity with the citizens of Guatemala and requests that Iván Velásquez is not removed from the International Commission Against Impunity/Comisión Internacional contra la Impunidad en Guatemala (CICIG).
          Cultural Survival is an organization that promotes Indigenous Peoples’ rights around the world. In light of the recent situation created by the worrisome decision of the President of Guatemala to declare Commissioner Iván Velázquez, head of the CICIG, to be a persona non grata, Cultural Survival stands in solidarity with the citizens of Guatemala. We make known:
1st. Our full support and recognition of the work of esteemed Commissioner Iván Velásquez who has fulfilled, with the highest level of capacity, impartiality, and good will, his functions to carry out the commitments of the CICIG. Commissioner Iván Velásquez set important precedents in investigations and in the application of justice in cases of corruption and impunity, which resulted in the resignation of the previous president of Guatemala and his vice-president. Commissioner Velásquez also contributed to the dismantling of criminal structures in various public institutions. We also recognize and value the important work of the Attorney General, Thelma Aldana, who leads the Public Ministry/Ministerio Publico, and has in every case supported and facilitated the work of the CICIG.
          2nd. We express our concern about the arbitrary application of the law and the apparent looting of the resources of the State. We are concerned that the government is using legal structures to protect those who perpetrate corruption and impunity.
          3rd. We call on President Jimmy Morales to reconsider and revoke his removal of Commissioner Iván Velásquez from the CICIG, complying with the provisional protection guaranteed by the Constitutional Court.
          4th. We stand in solidarity with and urge the Maya, Garifuna, Xinca and Ladino communities to continue to defend their rights to live in a country free from corruption, where human rights are respected, especially the right to freedom of expression of mass media as well as alternative media. Now, vigilance and unity of the diverse social sectors is needed to secure justice, transparency, and good governance--the bases of real democracy in the country.
          5th. We call on the international community to be vigilant and stay informed about this situation, supporting the efforts in process to guarantee a stable institutional framework that strengthens the rule of law. We reiterate our commitment to the promotion and defense of human rights in Guatemala, especially for Indigenous Peoples, through our work to advance the right of freedom of expression."

          REPORT TO CEDAW," Cultural Survival, August 08, 2017, https://, " Several Indigenous women's organizations from the Maya, Garífuna and Xinca peoples working with the Tzununijá Movement, have developed a multi-year consultation and collective construction process that has included meetings, conferences and workshops in an effort to produce the Second Shadow Specific Report on Indigenous Women of Guatemala  for submission to the

Committee on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women.
The Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) was adopted by the United Nations in 1979 and ratified by the State of Guatemala on August 12, 1982. Despite this, almost 35 years after the State had committed itself to eliminate all forms of discrimination against women, the situation of Indigenous women in the country continues to be
marked by various forms of discrimination, racism, and violence.
           The State of Guatemala has submitted various reports on compliance with this important international convention. In 2003, the Committee made several recommendations following the presentation of the State's sixth report. Among the most relevant are recommendations 34 and 35 which express the Committee's concern about the situation of Indigenous women in the country:
          '34: Noting that the majority of Guatemalans are Indigenous, the Committee expresses its concern about the situation of Indigenous women, who do not enjoy their human rights and are vulnerable to multiple forms of discrimination. It is also concerned at the lack of statistical information on the situation of Indigenous women.'
          '35: The Committee encourages the State party to take specific concrete steps to accelerate the improvement of the conditions of Indigenous women in all spheres of life
           Based on these clear recommendations issued by the Committee, the Tzununijá Movement promoted a broad participation process from Indigenous women, who have historically been set aside and invisible in all areas, especially in the reports prepared by the Guatemalan State, as well as in other reports from the women's and feminist movement that have little on the agenda  of the voices, situations and demands of Indigenous women. What is sought with the elaboration and presentation of specific reports, is to show that the socio-political and cultural contexts in which Indigenous women develop, face specific challenges due to marginalization, inequality, poverty, racism, etc. that have different impacts, which need to be taken into account by the State with a higher priority that it has been given to it so far, in order to ensure respect and compliance with the individual and collective rights of Indigenous women.
          In some cases, it is considered that they have been relegated to the concept of 'rural women,' which also has a bias, since Indigenous women are in all sectors of society, they are migrants, professionals, living in cities, they hold positions as decision makers and in some cases, leadership positions, which is contrasting when the situation of Indigenous women is analyzed only as rural women.
          The report prepared in 2009 by the Tzununijá Women's Movement to the CEDAW Committee was the first of its kind, presented specifically by Indigenous women, at the global level. The richness of both reports is that they have been the product of regional meetings and processes that have emerged from the communities that have given voice and spaces of expression to Indigenous women, from a local to a national level. It is considered that this alternative report is a space to clearly show the reality of the multiple oppressions and discrimination under which Indigenous women live, due to gender and ethnicity, which are also accentuated by the poverty and extreme poverty of predominantly Indigenous areas. This situation is exacerbated by the lack of State investment in the human development of Indigenous Peoples and the lack of implementation of human rights commitments.
          Garífuna and Xinca women have been fully involved in supporting this process, with a leading role and a lot of hope, considering that there are many gaps in the reports submitted by the State, which almost lack reliable and sufficient data.
          In a recent meeting to strengthen and validate the report to be presented this year, several women participants expressed that the reality of women in their communities in daily life is characterized by lack of access to education, scarce resources to provide coverage to the most remote Indigenous communities; lack of cultural relevance of implemented programs, poor health services, little or no access to justice in cases of violence, etc.
          In the regions with the highest concentration of Indigenous populations, there are high rates of maternal and infant mortality, due to various causes. Likewise, chronic child malnutrition is also more pronounced in Indigenous-majority departments.
'Indigenous women suffer very strongly discrimination and exclusion in access to education, access and treatment in health services, the devaluation of our work and the poverty levels in which our families live. There is also criminalization towards our leaders both men and women. The midwives are still not valued, they suffer discrimination and their mission is not understood by the official health system. It is worrying that pregnancies in girls and adolescents between 10 and 17 years of age will be in 2014 a total of 39,501 and that they focus on departments with Indigenous majority.' These are some of the conclusions from the 2017 report review workshop, to which more than 40 women from different villages contributed.
          The 2017 report to the Committee reflects several aspects that concern and affect the exercise of Indigenous Women's rights, especially in the following topics: political participation, education, health, violence against women and access to justice, criminalization, and employment.
           Regarding political participation, the women participants named discrimination, lack of access to decision-making spaces, polarization, and the fact political parties do not reflect the cultural diversity of the country, as significant obstacles.
          During the workshop an increase in the criminalization of women human rights defenders, resulting in criminal prosecution, harassment, evictions from their ancestral territories, threats and in some cases femicides was also reported. The protection of land is a key element for Indigenous women and their communities, as there is an intrinsic relationship between land, subsistence and cultural resistance, food sovereignty and the survival of Indigenous Peoples. However, the leaders face repressive acts by raising their voice in defense of land and territory, before the repression of the State and armed groups linked to business projects, which are imposed with no consultation in communities to divest them of their territories and exploit their resources.
          The 2017 report will be presented to the CEDAW Committee in the Fall, so voices and visions of Indigenous women can be taken into account. The women participants highly value this space for exercising their right to denounce abuses at a national and global level, to make their recommendations known to the State of Guatemala, and to advance the respect for and guarantee of their human rights, both individual and collective."

Witness for Peace stated July 28, 2017,, " Witness for Peace has been working in Colombia since 2000, when the U.S.’ devastating Plan Colombia began, and in Honduras since the U.S.-backed coup in 2009, and we need your help to be able to continue responding rapidly and strategically when our partners call.
During the 14 years of Plan Colombia, which cost U.S. taxpayers nearly 10 billion dollars at least 4 million Colombians were internally displaced, at least 4,300 civilians extrajudicially executed, and 400 human rights defenders killed.
           The 2009 coup in Honduras unleashed a human rights crisis, as the country’s elites heavily aided by their allies in the U.S. political, military, and economic establishment, have repressed social movements in order to preserve the country’s status as a 'neoliberal paradise.' As our Honduran partner organization COPINH observes, 'The U.S. funding and training of repressive armed forces in Honduras has meant a rise in assassinations, threats, insecurity and terror. Its role hasn’t been to protect the people, but instead to protect private business interests and the powerful elite.'
           WFP has been responding to these urgent crises, mobilizing our full-time teams in both countries to accompany and document the situation, coordinating Congressional and grassroots support, and sending regular delegations to stand in solidarity. In Colombia, we immediately mobilized in response to the repression by police and riot squads using U.S.-made munitions against the May 2017 civic strike in the marginalized, majority Afro-Colombian city of Buenaventura. Our Colombia Team provided emergency accompaniment, followed by a WFP National Board member. We sent two urgent actions to our grassroots base, and quickly organized a delegation with Black Lives Matter to coordinate and strategize about Black liberation movements and state violence.
          Help us continue this critical work.

In Honduras, we mobilized quickly after the March 2016 assassination of Indigenous leader Berta Cáceres: providing accompaniment by our full time team and supplementing with national board members and staff from other countries, sending multiple delegations, documenting events, and playing a crucial role in the grassroots organizing around the Berta Cáceres Human Rights in Honduras Act (HR 1299 in its 2017 iteration). We recently had two back-to-back delegations in the country, connecting U.S. organizers, movement leaders, and solidarity activists with our Honduran partners, and we’re working to finalize two fall speaking tours with Honduran social leaders.
          And with the Trump administration doubling down on the Obama administration’s imposition of the failed Plan Colombia model on Honduras, the connections between our work in the two countries are more important than ever."
          "Indigenous South Americans condemn failure to protect uncontacted tribes as “genocide,” Survival International, July 13, 2017, https://, reported, " 29 indigenous organizations from across South America have come together in Brazil to slam governments for failing to protect the lives and lands of uncontacted tribes – a situation they say is tantamount to genocide.
Representatives from tribes in Brazil, Peru, Colombia, Paraguay, and Venezuela, attended the large conference hosted by the Brazilian organization CTI in June 2017.
The conference condemned the 'exponential increase' in violence against indigenous people across the continent and described failures to properly protect the territory of uncontacted tribal peoples as genocide.
           Brazil has recently been under fire for cuts to its indigenous affairs agency, FUNAI. These cuts, especially those affecting teams of agents who protect uncontacted tribal territories, leave uncontacted peoples dangerously exposed to violence from outsiders, and diseases like flu and measles to which they have no resistance.
          The country is unusual in having had two genocide convictions in its courts: both for crimes against indigenous peoples. The UN genocide convention was signed 69 years ago in December 1948.
          A Brazilian senator is proposing a new bill in Brazil’s congress which would designate all unauthorized entry into uncontacted tribes’ lands as a breach of the country’s 'genocide law.' However, campaigners fear that the current government’s close ties to the corrupt agribusiness lobby could hinder efforts to create more robust protections.
The senator, Jorge Viana, is from Acre state, which is home to many uncontacted tribes, and also people like the Sapanawa, who were forced to make first contact in 2014.
          All uncontacted tribal peoples face catastrophe unless their land is protected. Survival International is committed to securing their land for them, and giving them the chance to determine their own futures."

          OF SLAVERY," Cultural Survival, December 4, 2017, https:// slavery, reported, " In South Africa, painful legacies of European colonization and the enslavement of Indigenous Africans are still having repercussions today. In an effort to acknowledge this history and heal lasting traumas, members of the Khoi San community in the Southern Cape of South Africa will gather on the 1st of December of this year to visit what is assumed to be the burial site of more than 600 enslaved Indigenous South Africans, and will hold a remembrance walk to commemorate their lives. Hear the details of this event in our newest radio program, "Indigenous South Africans Honor the End of Slavery". Also, learn more about slavery in South Africa with a program about Sarah Baartman, and check out an interview with Nancy Bordeaux for her perspective on healing intergenerational trauma, both included below.
          This example of Indigenous organizing is just one way that communities are joining together to rectify historical injustices enacted on them by colonizers and conquerors. What efforts in your community are working towards undoing historical trauma? Use our radio content to start a conversation with family, friends, and neighbors about pathways towards healing.
          As always, the programs included below are free to download, broadcast, and share!

          Indigenous South Africans Honor the End of Slavery
           Indigenous South Africans gather in George on the Western Cape to commemorate the anniversary of the day slavery was ended. Shaldon Ferris (Khoi San) interviews one of the organizers of the remembrance ceremonies, Kierie Khoi (Khoi San) to discuss how the events will seek to heal trauma inflicted by the forced migration, coerced labor, and extrajudicial killings of Indigenous South Africans during the era of colonization and slavery.

Ending Violence Against Women: Remembering Sarah Baartman
           Sarah Baartman was a Khoikhoi woman from South Africa who, under Dutch colonization of her homeland, was taken captive and coerced to participate in public shows and medical examinations which relied on a falsified science of racial difference. We honor her life as a testament to the urgent necessity of ending violence against women, especially Indigenous women and women of color.

Nancy Bordeaux on Historical Trauma
          Nancy Bordeaux (Sicangu Lakota) from South Dakota shares her work in domestic violence and sexual assault and gives advice on how to make a change
. She speaks about historical trauma and its effects on Native American peoples today. Nancy works with women who are victims of domestic violence and human trafficking and hopes to lessen the economic and mental health disparities in Indigenous women."

"Uganda: Batwa 'Pygmy' imprisoned for hunting now released," Survival International, November 6, 2017, https://, reported, "A Batwa “Pygmy” man has been released from prison, after spending over seven months behind bars for killing a small antelope inside a protected area from which his people were illegally evicted.
          Kafukuzi Valence, who has no birth certificate but reports his age as 72, claims the animal strayed from Uganda’s Bwindi Impenetrable National Park into a neighboring field.
          'They imprisoned me because I caught an animal from the forest and ate it,' Mr. Kafukuzi told Survival.
          'I was so ill and helpless, and I had no medical care,' said Mr. Kafukuzi, describing his time in prison. 'I had such bad pain in my chest and my legs, and there were so many bedbugs biting me.'
'Even now I am very weak. I have nothing to eat, I just sit here. That is my life now.'
          Mr. Kafukuzi alleges that rangers from the Uganda Wildlife Authority also stole possessions from his house at the time of his arrest
           Bwindi Impenetrable National Park was established on the ancestral homelands of the Batwa hunter-gatherers in 1991, with the support of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and without the Batwa’s consent. Now the Batwa are accused of 'poaching' when they hunt to feed their families.
          'The wildlife rangers announced in the region that everyone should leave the forest, but we stayed,' recounted Mr. Kafukuzi. 'They came to hunt us down and shoot at us.'
          But targeting tribal hunters diverts action away from tackling the true poachers – criminals conspiring with corrupt officials. Last week it was reported that a Uganda Wildlife Authority ranger was caught trafficking hippo teeth.
Survival is campaigning to stop the violation of tribal peoples’ rights in the name of conservation."

"Amazon Guardians travel to city for landmark protest," Survival International, August 31, 2017, https://, reported, " A group of Brazilian Indians hailed as heroes for patrolling the Amazon and evicting illegal loggers have occupied government offices, to demand protection for their lands.
          It is the first protest of its kind by the Indians, known as the Guajajara Guardians. Their people face an emergency, as much of their forest has been razed to the ground.
          The Guardians work to protect their forest in the north-eastern Brazilian Amazon. They share the area, known as the Arariboia indigenous territory, with uncontacted Awá Indians.
          The Indians’ forest is an island of green amid a sea of deforestation. Heavily armed illegal loggers are now penetrating this last refuge, and the government is doing little to stop them.
          Tainaky Guajajara, one of the Guardians’ leaders, said at the protest in the city of Imperatriz: “We’re occupying FUNAI [government indigenous affairs department] to demand our rights to the land, and protection for the environment. We need help, urgently. Our land is being invaded as we speak. The Brazilian government has forgotten us – it’s as if we don’t exist. So we’ve reached the limit. We will no longer put up with the way they treat us.”
          The Guajajara Guardians have taken matters into their own hands to save their land from destruction, and to prevent the genocide of the Awá. They patrol the forest, detect logging hotspots and crack down on invasions.
          Kaw Guajajara, the Guardians’ Coordinator, said: 'The uncontacted Awá can’t live without their forest. Our work has stopped many of the invaders… As long as we live, we will fight for the uncontacted Indians, for all of us, and for nature .'" target="_blank">Try watching this video on www. ></div
          Their work is dangerous – the Guardians constantly receive death threats from the powerful logging mafia, and three Guardians were killed in 2016. But they continue courageously and they know that the Awá, like all uncontacted peoples, face catastrophe unless their land is protected.
           Their operations have succeeded in drastically reducing the logging, but they urgently need help from the Brazilian authorities: Resources and equipment for their expeditions, and support from government agents who can arrest the loggers and keep them out.
          The Guardians are also demanding that the government implement an agreement drawn up by FUNAI, the military police force and the State’s security forces to build base camps to protect the territory, and to carry out joint operations to police the area.
Survival International’s Director, Stephen Corry, said: “The Guardians are protecting one of the last patches of Amazon rainforest in the region. Their determination to keep their forest intact is more important than ever as President Temer’s administration is trying to slash indigenous land protection

throughout Brazil. The Guajajara Guardians are unique and an inspiration to all who care for human rights and the environment. The government’s constitutional duty is to help them protect the forest. Its destruction could wipe out the uncontacted Awá. This is another humanitarian crisis in Brazil’s treatment of its tribal peoples.'”

"'Pygmy' man pleads with Bronx Zoo organization after son is killed for conservation," Survival International, October 12, 2017, https://, reported, " A Batwa “Pygmy” man has issued a desperate plea to the organization which runs New York’s Bronx zoo, after his 17-year-old son was shot dead by a park guard.
          The boy was gathering medicinal plants with his father, Mobutu Nakulire Munganga, in Kahuzi-Biega National Park in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) on August 26. An anti- poaching squad opened fire on them.
Mr. Nakulire was wounded but managed to escape, while his son, Mbone Christian, was killed at the scene. Mr. Nakulire has spent weeks in the regional hospital recovering.
           The guards receive logistical support, funding and training from the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), a big conservation body which is the parent organization of New York’s Bronx zoo. WCS was co-founded by notorious eugenicist Madison Grant.
          WCS has been funding the management of Kahuzi-Biega for over 20 years. According to international law and WCS’s own human rights policy, indigenous peoples’ consent is required for conservation projects on their land.
          Between the 1960s and 1980s, authorities violently and illegally evicted up to 6,000 Batwa from the park. 'The Batwa of today are not healthy like our grandparents were,” writes Mr. Nakulire, who was himself evicted as a child, in his complaint. “We struggle to find enough
to eat and are forced to cope with new diseases and the loss of many forest medicines…
          'Yet no one has ever come to seek our consent for the Kahuzi-Biega National Park,” the complaint reads. 'Why then does WCS continue to fund and support it?
          'Nothing will ever make up for the loss of my son, but I am making this complaint so that you can help me and my people find justice and return to our land,' ends Mr. Nakulire. 'WCS must honor its human rights policy and help end our suffering.'
          In September Survival released a detailed report on how WCS and other big conservation organizations are funding grave human rights abuses in the Congo Basin, including the Republic of Congo which borders the DRC.
          Survival’s Director Stephen Corry said: 'This tragedy is the latest chapter in a long and shameful story. First Mr. Nakulire’s people were violently and illegally evicted, now they face death if they try to return. WCS must keep its promises about respecting the Batwa’s rights. If they don’t have the Batwa’s consent for what they’re doing, they simply shouldn’t be there.'
          Background briefing
          Mr. Nakulire’s complaint can be read at:
          The World Wildlife Fund has also funded and equipped park guards in Kahuzi-Biega.
          Tribal peoples like the Batwa have been dependent on and managed their environments for centuries. Their lands are not wilderness. Evidence proves that tribal peoples are better at looking after their environment than anyone else. They are the best conservationists and guardians of the natural world. They should be at the forefront of the environmental movement.
          But tribal peoples are being illegally evicted from their ancestral homelands in the name of conservation. The big conservation organizations are guilty of supporting this. They never speak out against evictions.
          Survival International is leading the global fight against abuse in the name of conservation. 'Pygmy' is an umbrella term commonly used to refer to the hunter-gatherer peoples of the
          Congo Basin and elsewhere in Central Africa. The word is considered pejorative and avoided by some tribespeople, but used by others as a convenient and easily recognized way of describing themselves."

"Kalahari Bushmen appeal to Dalai Lama," Survival International, August 11, 2017,

https://, reported, "The Bushmen of Botswana’s Central Kalahari Game Reserve (CKGR) have written a moving appeal to the Dalai Lama, who is scheduled to visit Botswana this month, criticizing their country’s government for its brutal policies and urging him to speak out.
           In the letter, Bushman spokesman Jumanda Gakelebone said: “We still cannot live on our lands freely. The government makes it so that children must apply for permits to visit their parents when they become adults. We worry what the government will do when those parents pass away.
          'The government still forbids us from hunting and has introduced a shoot-on-sight policy against poachers. Last year a group of Bushmen out hunting were shot at from a police helicopter. Some of them were stripped naked and beaten.
          “People praise President Khama [Botswana’s President] as a conservation hero when he ignores our struggle and our country’s own courts. Yet his government is happy for mining to take place on our ancestral land.
          'We are the first people of the Kalahari. We are the ones who have protected this land and the animals that live there. Why has 'conservation' brought us so much suffering?'
          Hundreds of Bushmen families were illegally evicted from their ancestral homelands in the name of conservation and moved into government eviction camps between 1997 and 2002, following the discovery of diamonds in the Kalahari.
          Although the Bushmen won the right to return to the reserve in a historic court case in 2006, the country still has not respected its own high court’s ruling. Most Bushmen are denied access to their land by a brutal permit scheme.
          They are also accused of “poaching” because they hunt to feed their families, facing arrest and beatings, torture and death under a nationwide hunting ban.
          Survival International led the global campaign for Bushmen rights and is urging the Botswana government to allow them to determine their own futures.
          Survival’s Director Stephen Corry said: 'Botswana’s President has been violating his country’s High Court ruling and trampling on Bushmen rights for over a decade now. No independent observer believes the Bushmen pose any kind of risk to the country’s wildlife, but they’re still prevented from hunting, and still being forced to get permits just to see their relatives. It’s a terrible stain on the country’s reputation that won’t be erased until they’re treated humanely, and with respect.”

Rina Chandran, "Boycott India's tiger reserves until tribal rights protected, rights group says," Survival International, NOVEMBER27, 2017, HTTPS://WWW.REUTERS.COM/ARTICLE/US-INDIA- LANDRIGHTS-
Survival International has asked tourists to boycott India’s tiger reserves until the rights of indigenous people living in them are respected, drawing attention to growing tensions over land as the holiday season kicks off.
India’s National Tiger Conservation Authority earlier this year ordered 17 states to suspend granting of rights to indigenous people and other forest dwellers under the Forest Rights Act (FRA) in critical tiger habitats.
          The 2006 law aimed to improve the lives of impoverished tribes by recognizing their right to inhabit and live off forests where their forefathers settled
           'Tens of thousands of Indian tribal people have been illegally evicted from villages inside tiger reserves, and forced into lives of poverty and misery on the fringes of mainstream society,' Survival International said Monday.
          'The authorities need to realize that only by complying with the law and recognizing tribes’ rights can the tiger be saved,' director Stephen Corry said in a statement.
          An official at the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) said there were no forced evictions from the reserves.

In India and across the globe, efforts to protect wildlife and their habitats are pitting conservationists, trying to save endangered species, against tribal people, unable to secure rights to land they have depended on for centuries.
          Wildlife tourism is a growing money spinner for India, and activists have warned that moves to protect habitats of tigers, elephants and rhinoceros are hurting vulnerable communities and will also endanger wildlife.
India has about half the world’s estimated 3,200 tigers in dozens of reserves established since the 1970s, and has extensively promoted tiger safaris as a highlight for tourists.
          The tiger conservation authority has guidelines for the 'voluntary relocation' of people who live within critical tiger habitats, although activists say forced evictions are common.
'We are only relocating those people from core tiger habitats who are willing to move; there are no evictions,' said Debabrata Swain, an additional director general at the NTCA.
          'We care about the wildlife, but we also care about the tribals,” he told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.
          The FRA was expected to benefit more than a fifth of India’s 1.2 billion population, covering vast areas of forest land roughly the size of Germany. But implementation has been slow, with rights to only about 3 percent of land recorded so far.
          The conservation order has been challenged by the National Commission for Scheduled Tribes, which oversees protection of rights of tribal people, saying it is not in line with the 2006 forest law.
          'Tribal people living within wildlife reserves help protect and conserve wildlife, including tigers,' said S.K. Ratho, joint secretary of the commission.
          In the first reserve in southern India where tribal people won the right to stay, tiger numbers almost doubled between 2010 and 2014, according to Survival International. "

"Face of evicted tribal woman projected onto Indian embassy in Berlin – as Modi arrives for G20," Survival International, July 6, 2017, https:// reported, "Survival International campaigners have projected the face of an Indian tribal woman who was illegally evicted from her ancestral land onto the Indian embassy in Berlin. This is to send a message to the Indian government about the eviction of tribal peoples from tiger reserves in the name of conservation.
          Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is due to arrive in Germany today, ahead of the G20 summit this week. Protestors are highlighting the plight of tens of thousands of Indian tribal people, who have been illegally evicted from villages inside tiger reserves, and forced into lives of poverty and misery on the fringes of mainstream society.
The National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) has recently issued an order stating that tribal peoples’ rights should not be recognized in critical tiger habitats. The NTCA has no legal authority to issue this order, which is a gross violation of the Forest Rights Act.
          The Act guarantees tribal people the right to live on their ancestral land.
          The woman whose face has been projected onto the embassy is from the Baiga people in central India. Thousands of Baiga have been illegally evicted from their forests.
          In the past, some were moved into inadequate government resettlement sites, but more recently those evicted received no land or help in establishing their lives outside. Many families report that they have received only a fraction of the compensation they were promised.
          Many more communities are facing similar evictions across the country. While tribal people are being evicted, fee-paying tourists are welcomed in. In one tiger reserve, uranium exploration has just been approved.
Survival’s Director Stephen Corry said: 'Modi’s government has continued the inhumane and illegal practice of evicting tribal people from tiger reserves. It’s now planning to ignore tribal peoples’ rights and push ahead with mining and other so-called 'development' projects on lands that tribal peoples have been looking after for generations. It’s a con. It’s time the Indian government stopped attacking its own citizens and started abiding by its own laws.'”

Fortify Rights, September 28, 2017,
   n_myanmar?e=24e6ca1455 " United  Nations:  Act  Now  to  End  and  Remedy  Crimes  Against Humanity in Myanmar:
U.N. Secretary General to brief Security Council today, 88 organizations call for arms embargo, sanctions on Myanmar, "The United Nations Security Council and U.N. member states should act urgently to impose an arms embargo on the Myanmar military and targeted sanctions on individuals responsible for atrocity crimes against Rohingya Muslims and others in Rakhine State, Fortify Rights said today. U.N. Secretary General António Guterres will today publicly brief the U.N. Security Council on the human rights situation in Rakhine State.
          “No more excuses, the international community must act now,” said Kate Vigneswaran, Legal Director at Fortify Rights. “Condemnations from the international community are important, but concrete action is urgently needed to   end and remedy atrocities against Rohingya and others.”
          Fortify Rights, Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, and 85 other civil society organizations from around the world called today for U.N. Security Council action as well as a U.N. General Assembly Resolution to demand an immediate end to crimes against humanity against Rohingya. The organizations call on the Government of Myanmar to provide humanitarian aid agencies with “immediate and unhindered access to populations in need,” and for the authorities to provide unfettered access to a U.N. Fact-Finding Mission established by the U.N. Human Rights Council in March. The organizations also urged “member states and the Security Council to explore possible avenues to bring perpetrators of crimes under international law to justice.” Fortify Rights has documented killings, rape and gang-rape, mass graves, and other crimes, including the razing of entire villages, by state security forces against Rohingya civilians during two waves of Myanmar Army-led “clearance operations” beginning in October 2016 and continuing in August and September 2017. These attacks are ongoing and have forcibly displaced more than half
a million Rohingya since the October violence.
           'These are crimes against humanity, and they are being committed with complete impunity,” said Kate Vigneswaran. “The Security Council needs to act to ensure the attacks stop and the perpetrators are brought to justice.'
          Article 7 of the Rome Statute defines 'crimes against humanity” as an act “committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack directed against any civilian population, with knowledge of the attack
          Fortify Rights has collected a significant body of evidence in Rakhine State and on the Bangladesh-Myanmar border since October 2016 indicating that soldiers and police intentionally carried out prohibited acts within the context of a widespread and systematic attack against Rohingya with knowledge of the broader context into which these crimes were perpetrated and in full awareness that their actions contributed to the attack. This evidence indicates that Myanmar Army soldiers and members of the Myanmar Police Force committed crimes against humanity.
          The Myanmar Army-led attacks against Rohingya were in response to attacks on state security forces by the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA), known locally as al-Yaqin. On October 9, 2016, ARSA killed nine police officers during a surprise attack on three police outposts in Maungdaw and Rathedaung townships. On August 25, 2017, ARSA killed another 12 state security officials in attacks on
          30 police outposts and an army base in Maungdaw, Buthidaung, and Rathedaung  townships. Fortify  Rights  also  documented  killings  of  Rohingya  civilians  by  ARSA  and  called  on  the
          Myanmar government to hold perpetrators accountable.
          In recent days, the Myanmar government announced the discovery of 45 “Hindus” in a mass grave near Kha Maung Seik village in northern Maungdaw Township, alleging ARSA killed them on August
          25. The government continues to deny the U.N. Fact Finding Mission access to Rakhine State.
          The U.N. Fact Finding Mission should be given immediate and unfettered access to Rakhine State and other parts of the country, including Kachin and Shan states, to urgently investigate atrocity crimes, Fortify Rights said.
          'We’ve already seen what ongoing impunity for international crimes has done for Myanmar,” said Kate Vigneswaran. “It’s been destructive for the country and for the region and can’t continue to be an option for the international community.”

For more information, please contact: Kate Vigneswaran, Legal Director, Fortify Rights,
          +66.94.940.8057 (Thailand),; Twitter: @KateVigneswaran, @FortifyRights, Matthew Smith, Chief Executive Officer, +1.202.503.8032 (U.S.),; Twitter: @matthewfsmith, @fortifyrights.
          UN member states should act to pressure Myanmar to end crimes against  humanity  Myanmar,' We, a global coalition of 88 civil society organizations, urgently call upon UN member states to take immediate steps to address the human rights abuses and humanitarian catastrophe engulfing Myanmar’s ethnic Rohingya population. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad al Hussein have described the Myanmar security forces’ ongoing campaign against the Rohingya in northern Rakhine State as ethnic cleansing. As more evidence emerges, it is clear that the atrocities committed by Myanmar state security forces amount to crimes against humanity. The United Nations and its member states need to take urgent action. We urge UN delegations, especially those from the 114 countries committed to the Accountability, Coherence and Transparency (ACT) Code of Conduct, who made a pledge to support “timely and decisive action” to prevent or end the commission of genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes, to immediately undertake efforts to adopt a resolution in the UN General Assembly addressing the situation, and call upon the UN Security Council to consider measures to be imposed on the Myanmar government. Over 400,000 Rohingya have fled across the border into Bangladesh since August 25, when Myanmar security forces launched operations in response to coordinated attacks by the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) in Rakhine State. These operations, involving widespread killing, laying of landmines, looting, and arson targeting the Rohingya, have resulted in the mass destruction of more than 200 villages, according to satellite imagery and eyewitness testimony. Tens of thousands of people from other ethnic minorities have also been displaced as a result of the violence. Strong condemnations by the UN and world leaders have not brought an end to Myanmar’s atrocities.
          In his opening statement to the Human Rights Council on September 11, al Hussein noted that in 2016 he “warned that the pattern of gross violations of the human rights of the Rohingya suggested a widespread or systematic attack against the community, possibly amounting to crimes against humanity.”Civil society organizations have warned that the campaign of Myanmar’s security  forces  against  the  Rohingya since August 25 amounts to crimes against humanity. It is crucial for UN members to take concrete action and place direct pressure on Myanmar’s military and civilian leaders The European Union, until recently, was the chief sponsor of an annual resolution on human rights in Myanmar at the General Assembly. Last year, the EU decided to stop the effort even in the midst of government violence against the Rohingya beginning in October 2016. Now, we urge members of the EU to work with the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, as well as other concerned states to jointly revive this resolution as a means of pursuing decisive action by the General Assembly in response to the gravity of the ongoing situation in Rakhine State and the
          evolving human rights and humanitarian crisis.
          A General Assembly resolution should demand an immediate end to the abuses, that humanitarian aid agencies have immediate and unhindered access to populations in need, and for the UN Fact-Finding Mission authorized by the Human Rights Council in Geneva to be allowed unfettered access into and within Myanmar to investigate alleged human rights abuses across the country. It should also demand that the Myanmar authorities commit to ensuring that all Rohingya and other refugees and displaced people are able to return to their places of origin safely, voluntarily, and with dignity, and to dismantling the institutional discrimination and segregation of Rohingya and other Muslims in Rakhine State that forms the backdrop to the current crisis. The resolution should also urge member states and the Security Council to explore possible avenues to bring perpetrators of crimes under international law to justice. We also urge members of the Security Council to add to the pressure on Myanmar authorities by seriously considering options such as an arms embargo against the military and targeted financial sanctions against individuals responsible  for  crimes  and  serious  abuses. All concerned UN member states should also consider bilateral, multilateral, and regional actions they can take to place added pressure on the Myanmar government. In particular, we call on all states to immediately suspend military assistance and cooperation with Myanmar. If governments, UN officials and diplomats simply hold meetings and make speeches as atrocities continue in Myanmar, they bear the risk of failing to use every diplomatic tool at their disposal to stop the ethnic cleansing campaign and further crimes against humanity. In the face of mass destruction, killings and hundreds of thousands displaced, inaction should not be an option.
          American Jewish World Service Amnesty International
          ASEAN Parliamentarians for Human Rights (APHR) Asia Pacific Refugee Rights Network
          Asociación Pro Derechos Humano - Peru (APRODEH) Asylum Access
          Burma Campaign UK
          Burma Human Rights Network (BHRN) Burma Task Force
          Burmese Rohingya Organisation UK
          Canadian Centre for the Responsibility to Protect Center for Civilians in Conflict
          Center for Development of International Law Christian Solidarity Worldwide
          Coalition for Justice and Accountability (COJA)
          Coalition for the Rights of Refugees and Stateless Persons (CRSP) Council for Humanitarian Networking of Sheikul Islam Office CREDO Action
          Cross Cultural Foundation (CRCF) Development and Justice Initiative, India Equal Rights Trust
          Fortify Rights
          Foundation for Rural Development (FRD) Front Mahasiswa
          Genocide Watch
          Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect (GCR2P) Global Progressive Hub
          Human Rights and Development Foundation (HRDF) Human Rights Now
          Human Rights Watch
          Indonesia Legal Aid Foundation (YLBHI) Institute for Asian Democracy
          Institute on Statelessness and Inclusion International Campaign for the Rohingya
          International Coalition for the Responsibility to Protect International Detention Coalition
          International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) International Justice Project
          International Organization for Victim Assistance International State Crime Initiative
          Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) Jewish Alliance of Concern Over Burma Jewish Council for Public Affairs
          Jiyan Foundation for Human Rights
Justice Centre Hong Kong
          Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns Migrant 88
          Migrant Working Group (MWG) Minority Rights Group International
          Montreal Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies National Council of Churches
          National Religious Campaign Against Torture Odhikar
          Pan African Lawyers Union's (PALU) Partners Relief & Development Pemuda Anti Kekerasan Acheh Persatuan Darul Fitrah Terengganu Persatuan Ulama Kedah
          Physicians for Human Rights Presbyterian Church (USA) Progressive Voice Myanmar
          PROHAM (Society for the Promotion of Human Rights Malaysia) Refugees International
          Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism Restless Beings
          Society for Rights of Indigenous People of Sarawak Society for Threatened Peoples-Germany
          STAND Canada
          STAND: The Student-Led Movement to End Mass Atrocities Suaka Indonesia
          Swedish Burma Committee The Arakan Project
          The Episcopal Church
          The Jacob Blaustein Institute for the Advancement of Human Rights The Stanley Foundation
          Union for Reform Judaism
          Unitarian Universalist Service Committee United Nations Association – UK
          US Campaign for Burma Win Without War
          World Federalist Movement - Canada
          World Federalist Movement-Institute for Global Policy Yateem TV"

Damien Cave, "4,000 Kilometers, 10 Months: One Australian’s March for Indigenous Rights," The New York Times, August 7, 2017, https:// pryor-aboriginal-walk.html?ref=todayspaper, reported, "Clinton Pryor had already walked 4,780 kilometers, or nearly 3,000 miles, by the time I met up with him Thursday morning on a country road between Sydney and Melbourne.
          Mr. Pryor, an Aboriginal activist from Australia’s west coast, was starting his 310th day on foot to protest the treatment of Indigenous Australians."

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