Currently — January 31st, 2023

What you need to know, currently.

The Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes on the Flathead Reservation wrote their own climate action plan.

Temperatures continue to rise, damaging plants and wildlife that many ecosystems—and of course, people—rely upon. Climate change threatens the reservation’s 5,000 inhabitants and their way of life.

Since 2013, the CSKT have written and twice revised a strategy to protect their lands, according to original reporting by Grist.

The CSKT Climate Strategic Plan centers community engagement in the fight against a warming world. The committee that created the plan grew to about 100 people and eventually became the Climate Change Advisory Committee, most of whom are members of the tribe.

The committee focused on nine areas of life, including water, air, and fish, that are directly affected by climate change and then ranked them by their threats to the residents. Then, the committee called upon experts and people with lived experiences to think of mitigation strategies, rather than adaptation. Eight tribal elders were also invited to share their perspectives on how the land has changed.

The plan included restoring whitebark pine populations that hold spiritual significance and feed several species; removing invasive fish species, so native ones could thrive; restoring bison populations; and gathering more youth in preservation and conservation efforts.

—Aarohi Sheth

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