Aboriginal water issues from an ecological governance perspective

10/03/2007 1:00 pm
10/03/2007 3:00 pm

Room 152, Fraser (LAW) Building, University of Victoria

How we steward water and how we manage our watersheds directly affects the health of people and the environment. Yet many of us are disconnected from the complex environmental, political, economic, and socio-cultural issues surrounding water. Aboriginal communities in Canada are increasingly being put in a reactive position with regard to addressing water issues and asserting Aboriginal rights in relation to adequate drinking water, flooding and mould in homes on-reserve, bathing and other cultural uses, and declining fish habitat in local rivers. The goal of this event is to explore what an ecological governance perspective can contribute to resolving Aboriginal water issues.

An illustrative example involving the Halalt First Nation of Chemainus will be presented to stimulate discussion. Halalt designated Sept 14, 2007 as a special day to honour the Chemainus River and raise awareness about a once-healthy river now threatened by logging and development. About 150 people signed a "Pledge to Our River" which proclaimed the local communities' role as stewards and guardians of the river and called on all governments "to embark on a comprehensive watershed management plan before any more developments can impact Our River and its resources."

Refreshments provided. Please bring your own mug if possible!