13-3 Spring 2002 “Sustaining Our Future” Resource Guide

Feb 15th, 2002 | By | Category: 13-3: Sustaining Our Future, Resource Guides
By Dr. Diana Morris

The United Nations has defined sustainable development as “development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.” While this has confused the industrialized nations of the world, this statement has been much clearer to indigenous nations, who have always looked to the future and attempted to live sustainably. This resource guide gives a sampling of the ever-growing body of scholarly books, articles, handbooks, guidebooks, videos, and web sites on sustainability issues, especially those that include indigenous approaches.

Web Sites and Electronic Publications

Council of Energy Resource Tribes (CERT)

This organization of tribes is sponsoring a national conference to define sustainability from a tribal perspective March 21-22, 2002, in Denver. Contact: (303) 282-7576 for more information. <www.CertRedEarth.com>

First Nations Development Institute

This 20-year old organization works with tribes, Native communities, and rural or reservation-based Native nonprofit organizations to build sustainable economies. The organization’s annual Oweesta Conference focuses upon asset-based sustainable development. The website lists several publications, including “Building partnerships for community-based development,” which can be ordered. Contact FNDI at 11917 Main Street, Fredericksburg, VA 22408 or call (540) 371-5615. <www.firstnations.org>

Global Village Network

This site has a wealth of information on sustainable development topics. It has a resource library and a searchable database of full-text articles. A search inquiry on “Native Americans” returned 180 articles of interest. Contact: (719) 256-4421. <www.gaia.org >

Indigenous Environmental Network

“An alliance of grassroots indigenous peoples whose mission is to protect the sacredness of Mother Earth from contamination and exploitation by strengthening, maintaining, and respecting the traditional teachings and the natural laws.” Contact: <ien@igc.org>. <www.ienearth.org>

Native Americans and the Environment

As the creators of this site note, their purpose is to “(1) provide bibliographic materials. . .on native environmental issues and (2) provide focused and relevant hypertextual links . . .”. This site is easily navigated and contains a substantial amount of valuable information. Contact: (703) 237-7500. <www.indians.org/library/naehome.html>

Native American Renewable Energy Education Project

The site provides an entire 63-page book for download as well as three issues of the newsletter, “Indian Sustainable Energy News.” The 1998 book is Native power, a handbook on renewable energy and energy efficiency for Native American communities. For hard copies of NAREEP publications, contact Vivian Gratton at <vgratton@cruzio.com>. <http://eetd.lbl.gov/nareep/Publications.html

Sustainable Development Institute at the College of the Menominee Nation

For over 5,000 years, dating back to the earliest traces of the Menominee Indians of Wisconsin, the forest has been central to the lives and well being of the tribe. The Menominee have created a powerful example of a sustainable society that is a part of the modern world. The Sustainable Development Institute (SDI) is dedicated to examining sustainability issues and applying them to the Menominee model of sustainable development. This web site explores questions about sustainable development through multimedia presentations, essays, and conversations on the Menominee, their forest, and their spirit. The site also includes an annotated bibliography of scholarly resources and references on Sustainable Development. Contact: <hyoungbear@menominee.edu>. <www.menominee.edu/sdi/home1.htm>

Sustainable Sources

The purpose of Sustainable Sources is to provide a solutions-based environmental site. This site provides practical information through subject links, articles, and a searchable database. It contains relevant information for Native American people. Contact: <webmaster@greenbuilder.com>. <www2.planeta.com>


Brewer, S. (2001, May/June) Blowing in the wind: Tribal colleges lead the way in renewable energy. Native Peoples: Art & Lifeways, 14(4), 46-47.

Focusing on Turtle Mountain Community College and Blackfeet Community College, Brewer describes the renewable energy projects and curricular innovations in which tribal colleges are engaged.

Chernela, J. M. (1995) Sustainability in resource rights and conservation: The case of an Awa biosphere reserve in Colombia and Ecuador. In L. Sponsel (Ed.) Indigenous peoples andthe future of Amazonia: An ecological anthropology of an endangered world. (pp. 245-261). Tucson, AZ: The University of Arizona Press.

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