Inuit Petition as a Bridge? Beyond Dialectics of Climate Change and Indigenous Peoples' Rights
Hari M. Osofsky
University of Minnesota - Twin Cities - School of Law
American Indian Law Review, Vol. 31, p. 675, 2007
The rapid pace of climate change in the Arctic poses serious challenges for the Inuit peoples living there. A petition filed with the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights in December 2005 on behalf of Inuit in the United States and Canada claims that U.S. climate change policy violates their rights. This essay explores intersectional nature of this petition in order to engage what might constitute progress on climate change and indigenous peoples' rights. In particular, the piece relies upon two conceptual approaches to dissect the petition: (1) a law and geography perspective and (2) an exploration of the limits of dialectical analysis. The essay concludes with some reflections on the extent to which this kind of advocacy strategy in general - and this petition in particular - can be part of much-needed progress in protecting the rights of indigenous peoples. It discusses the ability of this petition to address legitimacy problems embedded in interactions between the international legal system and indigenous peoples, and what might constitute a win in this context.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 24
Keywords: indigenous peoples, international law, dialectics, intersystemic governance, human rights, climate change, environment, indian law
Date posted: April 9, 2007