Friday, April 25, 2008

Ponca Casey Camp-Horinek at UN: Fossil fuels, climate change, devastating Indian lands

Indigenous Environmental Network at the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues

Ponca Casey Camp-Horinek delivers statement on fossil fuels and climate change

INDIGENOUS ENVIRONMENTAL NETWORKAt the 7th Session of the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues Intervention on Climate: Tuesday, April 22nd, 2008 As part of the “Road of Destruction” campaign of the Indigenous Environmental Network, Indigenous grassroots representatives from communities traveled to New York City, New York to make a statement to the Indigenous Peoples of the world and world government leaders and UN agencies on the issue of climate change and fossil fuels. The following statement (intervention) was read to the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues on Tuesday, April 22, 2008. All statements were limited to 3 minutes and even though our collective statement should have been much longer, we respected the policy and limited our words to the 3 minute limit. Our delegation recognized many of the other statements given by Indigenous peoples from around the world. However, we recognized the link to fossil fuels was not being highlighted.

Casey Camp-Horinek, of the Ponca Nation was selected by the IEN delegation to read the intervention. As a member of concerned Ponca tribal members, Casey Camp has been fighting for environmental and health issues in the shadow of the international headquarters of the Conoco-Phillips refinery and the Carbon Black coke processing plant. After the statement was read, Casey asked for all Indigenous Peoples that are affected by oil, gas, coal and fossil fuel development, to please stand up. Almost the whole assembly stood up. This visual action demonstrated the need of CO2olonalism and petro politics to be addressed. IEN with support of Indigenous organizations throughout the world are demanding the Permanent Forum to call for an EMERGENCY WORLD SESSION of the UN General Assembly to address this issue (please see the Recommendation at the end of the statement below). Climate change is an Indigenous rights issue! INTERVENTION TO THE SEVENTH SESSION ON THE UNITED NATIONS PERMANENT FORUM ON INDIGENOUS ISSUES April 2008 Topic: Climate Submitted by the Indigenous Environmental Network, with support of global endorsements: Centre for Organisation Research & Education (Indigenous Peoples' Centre for Policy and Human Rights in India's Eastern Himalayan Territories Center for Organization Research and Education (CORE), Federation of Indigenous and Tribal Peoples in Asia, Indian Confederation of Indigenous and Tribal Peoples, Western Shoshone Defense Project, Cabildo Wayuu Noona, International Indian Treaty Council, Asociación Indígena Ambiental, Seventh Generation Fund.

Thank you, Madame Chair, for the opportunity to address the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues. I’m Casey Camp-Horinek a member of the Ponca Nation of Oklahoma. I represent the Indigenous Environmental Network, which includes the following affiliate organizations and Canadian First Nations governments that are with me today: Pa Tha Tah, REDOIL [Resisting Environmental Destruction on Indigenous Lands], Mikisew Cree First Nation, Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation, the Tribal Campus Climate Challenge Youth delegation, Dooda’ Desert Rock, Fort Berthold Environmental Awareness Committee, Passamaquoddy Bay Defenders, Black Mesa Water Coalition, Tulalip Youth, Laguna Acoma Coalition for a Safe Environment. We cannot deny that the dangers of climate change violate the human rights of Indigenous Peoples. Climate change threatens our food systems and ability to practice our ceremonies, forces removals from our traditional lands and territories, and creates disproportionate health impacts on Indigenous Peoples. Climate change is more than an environmental issue to Indigenous Peoples. Our cultures are in crisis – the inability of governments to address the issue of climate change is tantamount to cultural genocide for our Peoples. The UN and relevant international agencies must address these human rights violations immediately. We cannot wait; climate change is a real issue in the communities we are from. We must build upon the discussion of impacts, and take action to create real solutions to climate change and global warming now. Madame Chair, while there is a very justifiable increase of global interest on studying climate issues and debates on its solutions, it is business as usual with the expansion of oil, coal and other fossil fuel development within our homelands. The international scientific community, led by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which was established through a resolution of the UN General Assembly, has concluded that the burning of oil, gas, liquid natural gas, and coal, as fossil fuels, is the primary source of human-induced climate change and global warming. The Earth has already warmed by 0.76 degrees Celsius (nearly 1.4 degrees Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial levels. Most scientists warn that a temperature rise of 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) could have serious consequences. Above the 2 degrees level, scientists are saying this is the tipping point where temperatures and weather events will be out of control, with an acceleration of climate changes and global warming. Concerned scientists are now saying we are almost at that tipping point, within 10 years. For the well being of Mother Earth and future generations, the world must move more aggressively then it is now, towards a rigorous plan towards a zero fossil-fuel emissions level by 2050. Conventional fossil-fuel supplies are limited, even if we tear up Mother Earth to extract every last drop of oil and shard of coal. Tearing up the sacredness of our Mother Earth to get to the last drops of oil is not sustainable and violates every principle of our Indigenous Original Instructions. As Indigenous Peoples gathered here at the Seventh Session of the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, we are in solidarity with many other Indigenous Peoples of every region of our Mother Earth in demanding a worldwide moratorium on new exploration, extraction, and processing of fossil fuels on Indigenous Peoples land and territories. The UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples was adopted by the General Assembly on September 13, 2007 and consecrates fundamental rights of Indigenous Peoples. Articles 10, 26, 27, 29, and 32 justify the following recommendation: 1) The Permanent Forum, through ECOSOC [Economic and Social Council] call on the UN General Assembly to convene an emergency world session to fully explore, with all branches of the UN, and relevant treaty bodies, in particular UNCERD, the multiple impacts of climate change and its link to fossil fuel development and the human rights of Indigenous Peoples, to include the topics of, but not limited to social, economic, cultural, environmental, health, food security, land and water rights, and treaty rights. Thank you
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'Callous' Homeland Security on San Pedro, wrecking environment to build wall

Department of Homeland Security Ignored Warnings of Harm to San Pedro River Prior to October 2007 Border Wall Exemptions

By Center for Biological Diversity

PHOENIX, Ariz— Newly obtained Bureau of Land Management documents reveal that the Department of Homeland Security ignored warnings of damage to the San Pedro River, prior to exempting the border wall across the San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area from all environmental laws.
“The callousness displayed by Homeland Security in ignoring warnings to damage a national treasure is mind-boggling. The border wall does not stop humans, but it will destroy the southern part of the San Pedro,” said Dr. Robin Silver, board member of the Center for Biological Diversity. Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff exempted the border wall across the San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area from all environmental laws on October 22, 2007.
“The Bush administration keeps claiming that they are taking environmental impacts of the border wall into consideration, but time and time again their actions prove that sensitive wildlife and protected lands are being ignored and neglected in their rush to build expensive, ineffective walls" said Matt Clark, Southwest representative for Defenders of Wildlife. "The San Pedro River is treasured by Americans because it is a ribbon of life that sustains diverse bird and wildlife populations in an otherwise arid landscape. To handle such a fragile, important area with such disregard is reprehensible.” READ MORE ...

Yankton police officer quits job, arrested, at hog farm protest

Illegal South Dakota state police occupation continues on Yankton Indian Land

Incoming messages from Yankton protest:

I am Oitancan Zephier, a former police officer of the Yankton Sioux Tribe, combat veteran of Afghanistan and a father. Last week I quit my job when the protests started over the building of a hog farm by a corporation on private land surrounded by tribal lands. I quit because the Bureau of Indian Affairs will not help us. They stand and watch us get tossed in jail. The filth of the pigs will effect every part of our Indian people here.
There is a headstart school 2 miles away from the hog farm. There is a kindergarten through 12th grade school 4 miles away. There is a day care a couple miles away from the site. It is a prejudice act granted by the state of South Dakota to these pig farm owners. We need your help. If this is completed they will assume jurisdiction of all that surrounds them. The already began taking our tribal road, which we have intensely fought for 2 weeks now.
I have been thrown in jail while on our Indian land by a state officer. That is wrong!
I am begging you for your help. If you can, please publish the cry for help below in any way you can.
Contact me if you can help; or please forward this on to anyone who can help us.
People! We need your help! Come to Marty, SD now! Help us fight the Longview Farms Hog farm and the State of South Dakota.
We need the help of every nation that is willing to help us! Don't wait for an invitation. Please! Come help us now! We're too busy with things here to think of everyone that can help us.
We have our hands full with whats in front of us. Call us. Make suggestions. Give us advise! Whatever it is, help us! We need bodies.
We need people! people! people! We need people willing to fight! We need people willing to go to jail by a state officer on Indian land!
Doesn't that seem wrong to you? I went to jail while standing on a tribal highway by a South Dakota state deputy, while the Bureau of Indian Affairs watched.
That's what is happening! It is wrong! We need money for bail. Many more of our Indian people will be going to jail.
If we don't fight this, Indian people will continue to lose land. Next time it will be your people. Remember when a cry for help came out what "reason" or "excuse" you gave.
You'll get it right back when you need help. The system keeps us locked in place. It keeps us working, paying bills and plugged into society.
In that mindset we're all robots programmed to do what the government wants us to do pay taxes! Give them money! "I gotta feed my family," you're thinking.
I know it. I was too but overcame it. Tunkasina (the grandfather) knows that our fight is right and honorable. Better things will follow for us.
This is really not about a hog farm! This is about the racist state of south dakota moving in the middle of Indian country and saying, "This is our road!"
Tomorrow it will be "this is our land!" We need to fight! We need your help!

Oi Zephier
Ihanktonwan Dakota
Yankton Sioux Tribe
Marty, SD 57361
(605) 454-8355 (Cell)

Thursday, April 24, 2008

The Genocide of Gold, Meet the Resistance

Meet the Resistance: A Speaking Tour of Affected Indigenous Communities

NEW YORK -- Over 3,000 people are attending the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues (UNPFII) over the next two weeks in New York, including Indigenous Nations, UN bodies, Governments and NGO's. Three Indigenous communities present at the forum are voicing their concern against the worlds largest gold mining company, Canadian owned Barrick Gold.
As side events to the UNPFII, Wiradjuri (Australia), Ipili (Papua New Guinea) and Western Shoshone (Nevada, USA) will be talking about the desecration and destruction of their lands by Barrick Gold. Please show your support by coming to the following events to hear about Barrick's exploitative and unsustainable practices on these communities lands, culture and life.
These events have been supported by Friends of the Earth Australia,, Western Shoshone Defence Project, Mineral Policy Institute, Save Lake Cowal and Akali Tange Association.
Indigenous Resistance to Gold MiningOur guests will make presentations, show short films and answer questions about gold mining on their lands.
Carrie Dann, Western Shoshone (Nevada, USA)Neville ‘Chappy’ Williams, Wiradjuri (Australia)Jethro Tulin, Executive Officer Akali Tange Association, Ipili (Papua New Guinea) Thursday 24th April @ 7.3 0pm American Indian Community Center11 Broadway, 2nd Floor, New York
Subway 4 & 5 to Bowling Green, Lower Manhattan
Indigenous Voices Films and Speakers from Australia and Papua New Guinea Neville ‘Chappy’ Williams, Wiradjuri (Australia) Jethro Tulin, Executive Officer Akali Tange Association, Ipili (Papua New Guinea) Sunday 27th April @ 7.00pm Bluestocking’s BookStore172 Allen Street between Stanton and Riverington Lower East Side, Manhattan
Subway F J M Z to Delancey Street/Essex,
Indigenous Struggles from Australia and Papua New Guinea
Wedneday 30th April @ 7.00pm ABC No Rio156 Rivington Street between Suffolk and Clinton Streets Lower East Side, Manhattan
Subway F J M Z to Delancey Street/Essex
For more info:

Dooda Desert Rock members join Longest Walk to DC

Dooda Desert Rock Members Walk With The Longest Walk II to Washington, DC

By Elouise Brown

Arriving at Amarillo, Texas, members of Dooda Desert Rock continue their walk with the Longest Walk II, along the southern route across the United States to Washington D.C. The Longest Walk II began their trans-continental journey in San Francisco on February 11th. The walk marks the 30th anniversary of the original Longest Walk for environmental protection and Native American rights.
DDR joined the Longest Walk II as they crossed into New Mexico from Arizona. DDR president Elouise Brown reported that the weather has been unpredictable. Sometimes it has been warm and sunny, other times very windy and cold. In Taos, NM, the walkers encountered snow and wind, but they continued their sacred walk with the intent of carrying a strong message of protecting and improving the health of the environment for all people, and preserving the rights of indigenous peoples.
The mission of The Longest Walk II is to carry the message that All Life is Sacred, Save Mother Earth. We walk for the Seventh Generation, for our youth, for peace, for justice, for healing of Mother Earth, for the healing of our people suffering from diabetes, heart conditions, alcoholism, drug addiction, and other diseases. Through the elements of the seasons, we shall walk through the rain, snow, over mountains, high winds, through the heat and cold. Nothing shall deter us from completing our mission: All Life is Sacred, Protect Sacred Sites.
Let those who doubt, hear our pledge. Let those who believe, join our ranks. As we walk the final miles, by our side will be elders, families, children, people of all races, from many walks of life, from the old and the new America. All Life is Sacred, Clean Up Mother Earth.
As we walk, we support The Longest Walk II’s goal: The Clean Up America Campaign. This campaign is an effort to clean up our country’s highways and roads by collecting debris found along the Longest Walk’s route. This monumental task will engage Walkers at a grassroots level, in a global effort to promote harmony with our delicate environment. Longest Walk participants will carry specially marked trash bags to separate the collected refuse into trash bins and recycling bins. A rotating team of walkers will pick up trash along the way with trash pokers leaving a health trail of earth in their path.
The photo above shows a group of Dine (Navajo) representatives of Dooda Desert Rock walking with the Longest Walk II to Washington D.C. They need financial support while they represent the Dine people. Contributions can be sent to Dooda Desert Rock (DDR), P.O. Box 7838, Newcomb, NM 87455. All contributions are tax deductible and will help the DDR walkers continue to walk with the Longest Walk II until they arrive in Washington D.C. on July 11th.

Indigenous at UN plan Desert Rock/SITHE protest in New York

WHO: Indigenous Environmental Network (IEN) and members of its Native grassroots delegation attending the 7th Session of the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues
WHAT: Protest/Rally & Press Conference on Environmental Racism and Indigenous Peoples Rights
WHEN: Friday, April 25, 2008 at 9:30 am
WHERE: Sithe Global Power, LLC, 245 Park Avenue, New York City, NY
WHY: To demand immediate action to address fossil fuel expansion and climate chaos on Indigenous lands, and support Dooda Desert Rock (DDR), a Dine’ grassroots organization in calling out Sithe Global Power in it’s plan to build a coal-fired power plant on the Navajo reservation.

UNITED NATIONS, New York City, NY – A delegation of Indigenous Peoples from the United States and Canada are demanding immediate action to address climate chaos and crisis. Twenty two youth, women, elders and tribal chiefs have traveled to New York City to participate in the United Nations 7th Session of the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues. One of the main issues the UN forum is addressing is climate issues. This delegation is profiling the disproportionate impacts their communities face as a result of the expansion of fossil fuel development in their homelands resulting in increased greenhouse gases, contamination and depletion of water and compounding climate change. In solidarity with delegation member, Elouise Brown, President of DDR Committee, the delegation and supporters will stage a protest/rally at Sithe Global Power, LLC at 245 Park Avenue at 9:30am. Sithe Global Power formed and partnered with Desert Rock Energy Company to build a destructive mine-mouth coal-fired power plant in the Four Corners Area of the Navajo Nation in New Mexico. It would be the third coal-fired power plant in an area where the community is already suffering from respiratory and skin ailments and other health problems associated with the existing coal-burning power plants. Although there is an Environmental Impact Statement pending, it did not incorporate or address what the cumulative impacts of all three power plants and the existing uranium contamination in the area, would be. A press conference will take place immediately after the protest/rally and will feature various frontline Native community members impacted by fossil fuel expansion.
Speakers include: ·
Elouise Brown, (Dine [Navajo]) – As a President of Dooda Desert Rock, Elouise has been on the front line fighting a proposed coal fired power plant in her back yard near Crown Point, New Mexico. ·
Faith Gemmil, (Pit River, Wintu, and Neets'aii Gwich'in Athabascan) – As the REDOIL campaigner, runs an Alaska Native network opposing efforts of the U.S. Congress and the State of Alaska in their attempts to open the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) to offshore oil and gas development. ·
Clayton Thomas-Muller, (Cree) – With the Canadian Indigenous Tar Sands Campaign, working with Cree, Dene and Metis First Nations from northern Alberta Canada speaking out on health, ecological and environmental damge to their Aboriginal lands from tar sands development. · Loren White Jr., (Hidatsa/Arikara/Mandan) – As a member of the Environmental Awareness Committee from Fort Berthold, North Dakota, is fighting a proposed oil refinery that is set to produce crude oil from the tar sands in Canada. ·
David Moses Bridges, (Passomaquaddy First Nation) – As a member of the local “We take care of the land” coalition in Maine, fighting the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in their attempts to site a massive liquefied natural gas terminal in their pristine Atlantic homeland. · Enei Begaye, (Dine and Tohono O’odham) – As Executive Director of Black Mesa Water Coalition, they are battling coal and water mining and are leading a Native movement for a Just Transition and Green Economy/Green Job Transition. For more information please contact:
Clayton Thomas-Muller, CITSC (218) 760-6632 (cell)Elouise Brown, DDR (505) 505-947-6159 (cell)
Jihan Gearon IEN (218) 760-1370 (cell)
The Permanent Forum is meeting from April 21 to May 2, 2008 at the UN in New York. This is its 7th session since starting in 2002. This year the forum was opened by Bolivian President Evo Morales.
For more information please see