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Indigenous Environmental Network Delegation to Paris UN Climate Talks

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Indigenous Environmental Network Delegation Travels to Paris for UN Climate Talks

November 24, 2015
Press Contacts:Dallas Goldtooth, IEN Media-Comms Coordinator, [email protected]Tom Goldtooth, IEN Executive Director, [email protected]

Indigenous Environmental Network Delegation Travels to Paris for UN Climate TalksOver 45 Frontline Leaders Will Participate Inside and Outside COP21
Bemidji, MN – The Indigenous Environmental Network (IEN) is taking a delegation of over 45 Indigenous frontline leaders from across North America to participate inside and outside the 2015 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in Paris, France. The conference, also known at the Conference of Parties 21 (COP21) will run for two weeks from November 30th to December 12th, 2015, with the intended objective of achieving a binding and universal agreement on climate, from all the nations of the world.
The Indigenous Environmental Network’s delegation is a diverse group of Indigenous spokespeople from across North America who are representing various issues and campaigns directly affecting Indian Country, in regard to extractive development and community-based solutions to climate change. IEN will be joined by  a sister organization called Grassroots Global Justice, together forming a 100-person delegation titled, “It Takes Roots To Weather the Storm”.
The Indigenous Environmental Network is a registered civil society, non-governmental organization with the United Nations and will have accredited delegates inside the civil society forum of the climate negotiations as official observers. IEN will also have delegates participating in a number of “outside” events, actions, and meetings happening throughout Paris during the two weeks of the conference.
It is the intended goal of IEN to influence the climate negotiations for the explicit purposes of achieving four core demands from the COP21:
  • Establish a mandatory and legally-binding agreement to cut carbon emissions at the source.
  • Keep Fossil Fuels in the Ground by establishing moratoriums on future fossil fuel developments.
  • Recognize, respect, and observe the Rights of Indigenous Peoples in the climate agreement text.
  • Reject false solutions, which are market-based mechanisms to address climate change and support Just Transition economies.
As a means to accomplish this goal, IEN will be performing a series of cultural demonstrations and public events throughout Paris to raise awareness of critical issues affecting frontline communities. Some of which are as follows:
  • Sunrise Ceremony, November 29th,
  • Global Climate Action, November 29th, location TBD
  • Rights of Nature Tribunal, December 4-5, Maison de Metallos
  • Keep It In the Ground & Women’s Treaty Press Event, December 6th, Bassion De La Villette.
  • Natives in Paris Concert Event, December 10th, “la Halle aux Oliviers” at la Bellevilloise
  • Indigenous Water Ceremony, December 11th, location TBD
A critical component of the IEN delegation is the emphasis on Indigenous women and youth leadership. The Indigenous Environmental Network is one of the founding signatories of the Indigenous Women of the North and South – Defend Mother Earth Treaty Compact 2015. This historic document will be presented at a press event on December 6th, 2015. IEN will also be bringing 13 Lummi youth from the Puget Sound area of the United States to encourage in-depth participation by our future leaders and generations.
Our current list of key spokespeople and their respective focal issues:
Kandi Mossett Fracking, Just Transition, Renewable Energy
Alberto Saldamando Human Rights and Rights of Indigenous Peoples
Pennie Plant California Fracking, Women’s Treaty
Tantoo Cardinal Tar Sands, Women’s Treaty
Frank Waln Youth Climate Justice, Keystone XL, Native Hip-hop artist
Casey Camp Women’s Rights
Faith Gemmill Alaska Offshore Oil, ANWR
Jihan Gearon Just Transition, Coal
Princess Johnson Alaska Offshore Oil
Eriel Deranger Tar Sands, UNDRIP
Crystal Lameman Tar Sands, Women’s Rights
Oren Lyons Rights of Indigenous Peoples
Wahleah Johns Coal, Just Transition
Xiuhtexcatl Martinez Youth Climate Justice
Itzcuauhtli Martinez Youth Climate Justice
Allison Warden Arctic Issues
Clayton Thomas-Mueller Tar Sands, Stop It At the Source
Tom Goldtooth Climate Justice, Extractive Economy, Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
For more information: schedule of events, blogs, podcasts, delegation information and media please visit

Brenda Norrell has been a news reporter in Indian country for 29 years, serving as a writer for Navajo Times and a stringer for AP and USA Today during the 18 years she lived on the Navajo Nation. After being a longtime staff reporter for Indian Country Today, she was censored and terminated. She then created Censored News, focused on Indigenous Peoples and human rights, now in its fifth year.


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