Arctic Energy Development and Best Practices on Consultation with Indigenous Peoples
45 Pages Posted: 6 Sep 2013
Date Written: August 7, 2013
Arctic energy development has massive potential in helping meet world energy needs and in promoting sustainable Arctic development. At the same time, the Arctic is largely inhabited by Indigenous peoples and has special environmental vulnerabilities that can contribute to impacts on Arctic Indigenous peoples. Norms of consultation with Indigenous peoples thus have a particular importance in Arctic contexts. This Article examines this very much under-studied issue. It seeks to make an innovative contribution to understanding best practices on consultation appropriate to Arctic-specific contexts, considering evolving national and international law norms of consultation. Part II of the Article carries out a comparison of existing implementations of international norms of consultation in countries across the Arctic region. Part III distills best practices on consultation from both evolving national and international law, including both in the Arctic states but also in other states whose practices can shed light. Part IV examines unique Arctic circumstances and develops a set of categories for Arctic-specific consideration of consultation. Part V ties together the best practices and the impact categories of Part IV and seeks to comment on the existing state practices discussed in Part II, signalling directions in which different states might consider shifting so as to best respect consultation norms. The underlying aim of the Article is to offer practical recommendations that facilitate Arctic energy development in responsible ways, thereby furthering its long-term acceptability and potential.
Keywords: Arctic, energy development, indigenous consultation, duty to consult
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