Don’t melt my homeland!

This is a personal plea from me — I’m from the North. Actually I’m from North of North, above the Arctic Circle, the North Pole where reindeer live …and Santa!

My people are Saami (Sapmi!)

We are not called Lapplanders as that term is derogatory! I’m gonna include a little video at the end so you can see how my people live!

The North is my traditional homeland. Since a few nations occupy the North of North, the arctic is sometimes refered to as the Circumpolar Region.

And while we are considered Indigenous People under the UN Declaration of Indigenous Rights I’ve been increasingly concerned about the state of the arctic and the circumpolar region. You see, roughly speaking Saami translates into “land” as in the land my people have traditionally lived on, there was/is no seperation between human being and mother earth — both were considered one — so protecting the arctic has been very important to my people.

[Note: Canada has not signed on to this Declaration, it was one of four nations who refused to sign — Canada; United States; New Zealand and Australia — so I stand with my indigenous brothers and sisters for equal justice!]  

So I’m going to need your help in protecting my homeland. Please.

First, here’s a good background article:  

Arctic Governance: Traditional Knowledge of Arctic Indigenous Peoples from an International Policy Perspective

You can help combating global warming (Climate Justice!) and by preventing oil drilling or natural resource extraction in what is a very sensitive ecological environment.

Yesterday it was reported that the G8/G20 (+friends) were going to discuss issues concerning the environment — and not simply economics.

But I’m going to need the activist community’s help to help keep the issue of the environment on the agenda! (you know how a world leader’s mind can drift after eating so much fancy food and expensive wine at the Summit)

1: On the streets: Demonstrations in Toronto!

–Wednesday June 23, 2010 is Climate Justice Day

–Thursday is the Indigenous Day of Action

Full schedule here.

2: Arctic and oil drilling (Lady Gaga says this is a, “bad romance!”)

For Canadians (English speaking — I’m sending this message out in different circumpolar languages. I would like to point out here that this is not a fight for Canadian control of the arctic since the Saami believe that “We the Saami, are one people and state borders shall not divide our people’s unity.”

Here’s a message I received from Gerald Butts of WWF:

“Oil continues to spill in the wake of the BP Deepwater Horizon disaster; devastating the wildlife, people and ecosystems of the Gulf of Mexico.

The images and stories from the Gulf are heart-wrenching and beg the questions: could this happen in Canada’s Arctic, and if so, are we prepared?

The short answers: yes, and no we’re not.

Speak up for greater regulation of offshore drilling in Canada. http://wwf.panda.org/what_we_do/where_we_work/arctic/

3: More info

–The Arctic is a vulnerable region in an ecological respect and has become increasingly exposed to the effects of industrial and agricultural activities worldwide. Wind, precipitation and currents carry pollution to the Arctic region. Thus, protecting the environment of the Arctic is an international obligation. By Børge Brende http://www.grida.no/publications/et/pt/page/2573.aspx

–Harper’s vision fails to protect Arctic http://www.canada.com/ottawacitizen/news/story.html?id=b51c0259-5cb1-4a00-b23c-eed78ee13e1a

–Protecting the Arctic and Arctic Oceans http://www.protectthearctic.org/

–Inuit Circumpolar Council — Canada http://www.inuitcircumpolar.com/index.php?ID=160&Lang=En

–Sami Arctic Governance — “A sustainable future for the North” http://www.arcticgovernance.org/sami-statistics-2010.4791494-142902.html



Krystalline Kraus

krystalline kraus is an intrepid explorer and reporter from Toronto, Canada. A veteran activist and journalist for rabble.ca, she needs no aviator goggles, gas mask or red cape but proceeds fearlessly...