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Integrating Traditional Ecological Knowledge in Hydropower Reform

February 22, 2023 @ 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

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The Institute for Integrative Conservation, in collaboration with the W&M Harrison Ruffin Tyler Department of History and the Hydropower Reform Coalition, presents: Integrating Traditional Ecological Knowledge in Hydropower Reform

Part of the IIC 2022-23 Conservation Speaker Series: Re-Imagining Protected Area Conservation

Conceptions of nature as separate from or in service to humans have influenced the designation, establishment and management of protected areas in the United States, including National Parks, Wilderness Areas, and rivers across the country. Some protected area designations have resulted in removal of Indigenous peoples or restrictions placed upon their access to place and resources. The licensing and management of hydropower projects across the country have also been influenced by these perspectives. The hydropower licensing process includes Tribal consultation, but separates cultural resource issues from environmental issues and is not designed to recognize the interconnectedness of culture and environment.

Innovative co-management models for some hydropower projects and protected area management plans prioritize Tribal concerns and perspectives, providing lessons for more just and sustainable decision-making.

In this panel, we will hear from riparian and fisheries experts representing U.S. tribes on:

1. How Indigenous understandings of land ownership, relationships, and conservation interact and conflict with the concept of humans as separate from nature

2. How traditional knowledge can be better incorporated into riparian conservation and hydropower decision-making

3. What approaches have worked to resolve, address, or mitigate the non-inclusive approaches to land and resource management, particularly related to hydropower

This event is sponsored by the Institute for Integrative Conservation, the W&M History Department, and the Hydropower Reform Coalition. We thank the W&M Center for Racial and Social Justice, American Indian Resource Center, American Indian Students Association, Native Studies Minor, the Environment and Sustainability Program, Department of History, Department of Anthropology, Reves Center for International Studies, and W&M Libraries for their ongoing collaboration with the IIC and the Conservation Speaker Series.

Click here for more information and to register.


February 22, 2023
4:00 pm - 5:30 pm