First Nations activists holding signs reading "Sorry means you don't do it again! Not to 2nd Stolen Generation!"
Photo: Al Jazeera

We cannot lessen the impacts of climate change if we do not learn from the mistakes of the past. Aboriginal and First Nations people must be centred in decision making. Their knowledge in caring for country for millennia must be honoured, sought out, and understood. Their time must be paid for in providing advice.

There have been stories from all over the country for years about the damage being seen by custodians, and ideas for management based in science and thousands of years of experience.

Traditional owners are devastated by the lack of recovery at the site of Australia’s worst recorded mangrove dieback and are calling for action to limit climate change threats.

ABC News, Oct 2019
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Know your history

Indigenous Land Management

There has been significant discussion in late 2019 / early 2020 after the unprecedented fires about Indigenous land management and cultural burning practices.

Climate Emergency Critiques

There is a pattern of critique from First Nations organisers about the narrative of “climate emergency” which has been broadly adopted by the climate movement.

The “emergency” framing can bring up ideas of military or state intervention, and a potential loss of human rights, and civil liberties. Aboriginal people have concerns around how the “emergency” relating to the abuse of children led to the Northern Territory intervention and significant harm. With the unprecedented deployment of the military to relocate climate refugees, we must be mindful of this as a movement. The “state of emergency” has already resulted in Victorian police depicting protesters as selfish and reckless. (Jan 2020)

Read critiques on Eureka Street, Sydney Morning Herald, and from the Australian Youth Climate Coalition.