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Why This Matters: Native American tribal governments must be treated fairly under the law. The Trump administration dragged its feet on disbursing the badly needed stimulus funds, which Senator Tom Udall called “inexcusable” at a time when native communities are being ravaged by the coronavirus due to their lack of adequate health care and basic needs like clean running water. And that it took drawn-out litigation to invalidate long-defunct oil and gas leases on Native American sacred lands is further evidence of systemic discrimination against them.
CARES Funding Foot Dragging
Tribes initially sued to gain access to the full amount of CARES Act funding because the Trump Administration had withheld it all while the Alaska Native Corporations (ANCs) claimed they were eligible for it even though they are not recognized tribal governments but rather private corporations owned by Native Alaskans. Only after the same judge ruled in May that the ANCs cannot receive the funds (a decision which is being appealed now) did the Treasury Department disburse 60% of the CARES Funds intended for tribal governments. But they withheld a portion for the ANCs should they succeed, which the court just struck down now. This paves the way for the final nearly $700m to get to the tribal governments that desperately need it albeit months late.
The Blackfeet explained the significance of their court victory this way in an Earth Justice press statement. “Our traditional practices and traditional lands are the firm ground underfoot that we need to push off into the future,” said Tyson Running Wolf. Running Wolf is a Montana state legislator, former Blackfeet Tribal Business Council member, hunting outfitter, and leader among Blackfeet traditionalists. “This is how we heal ourselves, how we heal our communities, how we move forward into success. The Badger-Two Medicine is more than just land; it’s an entire way of life.”
Researchers from the National University of Singapore used data from more than 1,000 twin siblings to evaluate their opinions about environmental policy. They found identical twins were more likely to have similar views on green policy than non-identical twins, suggesting that support for climate action may have a genetic component. Felix Tropf, a professor in […]
Last month, 50,000 images from 90 countries entered National Geographic’s 2021 Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition. Among the many breathtaking photos of a living planet fighting against climate change, a winner has finally been chosen. French underwater photographer Laurent Ballesta has been awarded Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2021 for his photo of […]
The Fossil Fuel Resistance is in Washington, D.C. October 11-15, 2021#PeopleVsFossilFuels pic.twitter.com/BsnJsujRFe — Climate Justice Alliance (CJA) (@CJAOurPower) October 11, 2021 On Monday, Indigenous Peoples’ Day, hundreds of people marched to the White House to demand the President and Congress step up efforts to combat climate change. The rally was organized by the Build Back Fossil […]
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