Why environmentalism must support Land Back

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Changing the conservation conversation

Hi Paov,

Biodiversity and climate change are having a moment. Government leaders, celebrities and mainstream media are talking about conservation like never before for good reason. Our future on this planet is at stake.

While protecting lands and waters is a way to address the damage wrought by centuries of unsustainable development, it’s more importantly a chance to right the wrongs at the foundation of a country like Canada: colonialism and the theft of land from this continent's original inhabitants.

The Indigenous-led Land Back movement has emerged as a way for communities to envision and enact authority over their territories — authority in line with their laws, cultures and governance models that long predate this country, its provinces and territories.

Conservation efforts must support Land Back and call on our governments to put returning land to First Nations, Inuit and Métis communities at the centre of efforts to protect nature.

Thanks to your support we published Changing Conservation:... Environmentalism must support Land Back that looks at some case studies, explains why the trend of environmental protections restricting Indigenous rights must be reversed, and argues that returning land to Indigenous Peoples is the best hope for a stable and safe future on this planet.

Please read our publication and take the next step: call on the prime minister and your premier to legislate and invest in solutions that return authority to Indigenous Peoples and honour self-determination from coast to coast to coast.

Write now!

It’s the job of our movement to push governments to invest in the fundamental changes needed to tackle both the biodiversity and climate crises and the harmful legacy of colonization here.

It’s possible to have a future where wildlife thrives in healthy ecosystems and clean water flows across lands stewarded by the people who have lived on them for millennia. And where all people are safe and have plenty. This is the future worth fighting for, together.

Towards environmental justice,

Torrance Coste

National Campaign Director
Wilderness Committee

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