Nunatsiaq Online
NEWS: Around the Arctic November 10, 2017 - 8:00 am

International Inuit org looks at cross-boundary wildlife management

“When the animals are migrating, they don’t respect the boundaries"

JIM BELL
Jimmy Stotts, the president of ICC-Alaska, said the international circumpolar organization wants to create a wildlife management strategy that crosses international boundaries. (PHOTO BY JIM BELL)
Jimmy Stotts, the president of ICC-Alaska, said the international circumpolar organization wants to create a wildlife management strategy that crosses international boundaries. (PHOTO BY JIM BELL)

The Inuit Circumpolar Council, at a three-day wildlife summit in Ottawa that wrapped up Nov. 8, took a big step this week toward creating an Arctic wildlife management strategy that includes recognition of fish and animals that roam across international boundaries.

The ICC held the meeting, which brought together delegates from Canada, Alaska and Greenland, at a hotel in downtown Ottawa.

“The idea for this meeting was to create an opportunity to collaborate more and to start looking at wildlife management across the ecosystems instead of within national or international boundaries,” Jimmy Stotts, the chair of ICC Alaska, told Nunatsiaq News Nov. 7.

“When the animals are migrating, they don’t respect the boundaries. It makes a lot of sense to us that with the task of managing wildlife, taking the international approach is better for the animals, better for us, better for the environment,” Stotts said.

To that end, the ICC will issue a report on the summit and prepare a draft wildlife management strategy for presentation at ICC’s next general assembly, to be held in Utqiaġvik, Alaska, formerly known as Barrow, in 2018.

“The summit resulted in a commitment to collaboratively and inclusively promote, sustain and strengthen Inuit cultural rights to food sovereignty,” the ICC said in a release.

The conference agenda states the report will look at regional, national and international wildlife management policies, as well as the effect of environmental change, public perceptions and changing socio-economic conditions on Inuit food security.

“Rights to harvest the Arctic living resources are embedded in the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Inuit rights are being eroded by environmental change and public perceptions,” said Duane Smith, the CEO of the Inuvialuit Regional Corp. and chair of the summit, in a news release.

The ICC also said its ultimate goal is a management region that crosses international boundaries.

“The summit further called for a unified pan-Arctic voice on Inuit rights to the sustainable use of the Arctic’s living resources and a move toward circumpolar wildlife management without borders,” the ICC release said.

The idea for a wildlife summit originated at the general assembly that the ICC held in Inuvik in 2014, as part of the Kitigaaryuit Declaration issued at the end of that gathering.

  ICC Wildlife Management Summit Agenda by NunatsiaqNews on Scribd

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(2) Comments:

#1. Posted by Inuk Hunter on November 10, 2017

This is why Inuit always said animals have no boundaries and belong to no one but our governments impose quotas and seasons to hunt them but they belong to one only nature.

#2. Posted by Sixties Child on November 10, 2017

In our community, when Bears/wolves or any other predator comes close to or into the community they want them shot on the spot as they will just return if we just scare them off. They say better to be safe than lose someone to a large wild animal.

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