In honor of Indigenous Peoples' Day, Sea Witch Botanicals will be donating 25% of sales from October 9th through the 11th to Indigenous Environmental Network.
Indigenous Peoples Day falls on Monday, October 11th, and it’s a great time to reflect on the work Indigenous people are doing to address environmental problems and demand action on global climate change. The work that Indigenous people are doing benefits all of us, and often goes unremarked upon by our news media, and we believe that these efforts, which are some of the most important and effective happening in the nation today, deserve more recognition.
The Indigenous Environmental Network (IEN) is a grassroots organization that coordinates the efforts of many indigenous peoples and individuals to push for environmental change. They have recently expanded their efforts to address global concerns, like climate change. Their goal is to build the capacity of Indigenous communities and tribal governments to protect their sacred sites, as well as the land, water, air and natural resources, and to protect the health of all living things. They provide support, resources, and referrals to Indigenous communities and youth, provide news on the environment and issues of social justice, and hold local, regional, and national meetings on these issues.
Climate Change Action
A report issued by the Indigenous Environmental Network in August of this year shows that Indigenous efforts have stopped or delayed as much as 785 million metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions in the United States. This represents nearly half of the 1.587 billion metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions that have been halted over the same time period. This alone is a testament to the efficacy of Indigenous resistance.
IEN supports resistance to projects like Keystone XL Pipeline and Line 3, supporting a combination of non-violent civil disobedience and legal measures to oppose these projects. In response to these actions, multiple attacks have been made against indigenous communities and protests by colonial governmental organizations.
IEN confronts climate change at its source, helping Indigenous communities “keep it in the ground” by protesting fracking installations, pipelines, and other sources of petroleum. This action and support by IEN and by Indigenous nations across the country benefits not only Indigenous peoples, but everyone in the world.
Currently, IEN is supporting a non-violent civil disobedience action in Washington DC to demand an end to our extraction and use of fossil fuels. The protest takes place from October 11th to the 15th.
Support For Economic Justice
The Indigenous Environmental Network has joined forces with the Climate Justice Alliance to further efforts for a just transition away from fossil fuels. They recognize wealth inequality and climate change as intersecting issues, and understand that neither can be addressed alone. This is in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, which exacerbated wealth inequality through loss of income and through compelling front-line employees to work in dangerous positions throughout the pandemic.
A People’s Orientation to a Regenerative Economy works to shift popular awareness and bring attention to the fact that a change in how our economy functions is not just about changing out elected leaders; we must change how we think about the economy and its impacts on people and the planet. It raises the voices of folks on the front lines, including Indigenous people, Black people, Asian people, Pacific Islanders, and even marginalized white communities to create awareness of the economic issues that impact them. They advocate for an economic transformation that is just and equitable, for all people.
Addressing Carbon Pricing
Carbon pricing refers to any tax, offset, or payment that allows companies to continue to emit greenhouse gasses. These programs do not effectively keep fossil fuels in the ground; they attempt to solve a symptom of the problem, rather than addressing the problem at its root.
The largest emitters of greenhouse gasses are large companies who can afford to pay for greenhouse emissions, and these fees and taxes are typically lower than the cost of transitioning away from fossil fuels. Essentially, they allow polluters to continue to pollute.
These carbon pricing schemes create a market for carbon emissions that commoditizes our future well-being. Climate change is a real threat to all people across the globe, and requires immediate and effective remediation. Carbon pricing does not and will never accomplish this.
A study released in March of this year, focusing on the actual results of carbon pricing rather than on theory, found that carbon pricing schemes do not work as advertised. A review of quantitative data from 1990 forward shows that carbon pricing policies generally reduce emissions by between 0% and 2% per year. In comparison, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, or IPCC, states that greenhouse gas emissions must be reduced by 45% of 2010 levels in order to avoid the worst impacts of climate change.
Some of these carbon pricing programs say that they will use the revenue gained to offer grants to environmental organizations, but the proposed grants are far less than the cost of resistance, and are tokens, a tactic for making carbon pricing more palatable.
The IEN has released a comprehensive document covering the facts and talking points around carbon pricing. This allows us to speak from an informed and factual perspective about the big problems with carbon pricing.
Supporting Indigenous Environmental Network
This is only a small selection of the work and campaigns by the Indigenous Environmental Network. This organization supports Indigenous environmental actions small and large across the nation and around the world - actions that we all benefit from. Please join us in celebrating and supporting this organization! You can donate directly through Paypal, and the site provides a list of additional organizations that you can donate to as well.
For our part, we are donating 25% of sales from October 9th through the 11th to the Indigenous Environmental Network. Please join us in celebrating and supporting this vital organization!
And don't forget to support Indigenous-owned businesses!