July 25th, 2024

Assembly of First Nations climate strategy seeks collaboration between governments

By The Canadian Press on October 18, 2023.

Interim Assembly of First Nations National Chief Joanna Bernard speaks, joined by AFN Quebec-Labrador Regional Chief Ghislain Picard, centre, and Nookomis Roberta Oshkabewisens, right, as they launch the AFN National Climate Strategy on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, on Wednesday, Oct. 18, 2023. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang

OTTAWA – The Assembly of First Nations launched its new national climate strategy in Ottawa today, calling on federal, provincial, and territorial governments to work with First Nations to implement their climate priorities.

Interim National Chief Joanna Bernard said this year’s record-breaking wildfire season is a reason why all leaders should be taking climate change seriously, especially in First Nations communities.

She says this is only the beginning of what it to come, and Indigenous Peoples have taken matters into their own hands to try to find solutions.

The assembly’s member First Nations declared a climate emergency in July 2019, in recognition of how climate change was negatively affecting their lands, waters, animals and peoples.

The declaration called for the development of a First Nations-led climate strategy, which the AFN unveiled on Parliament Hill today.

The strategy aims to incorporate Indigenous knowledge systems, rights and self-determination in co-operation with other governments, and seeks “urgent and transformative climate action” that incorporates First Nations solutions.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 18, 2023.

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