August 17, 2021
(Xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish) and səlilwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh)/Vancouver, B.C.) The First Nations Leadership Council (FNLC) calls upon the governments of Canada and British Columbia to take the escalating and deadly climate emergency seriously and act immediately and swiftly in response to the threat posed by human created climate change. The danger of the current path we are on is highlighted by the recent United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report Climate Change 2021: the Physical Science Basis (the IPCC Report) released last week.
The IPCC Report shows that observed increases in greenhouse gas (GHG) concentrations trapped in the atmosphere are unequivocally caused by human activities. Observed global warming shows that human-caused surface global temperature has increased by 1.09oC and will continue to increase until at least the mid-century even under the best proactive scenario. In the next 20 years of global warming, the average temperature at the earth’s surface is expected to increase by more than 1.5oC to 2oC unless deep reductions in GHG emissions occur in the coming decades. The UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples affirms that Indigenous peoples must provide their free, prior and informed consent on any development taking place in their respective territories. The proper title holders to the land exercise self-determination and must be full partners in any plans to address the climate emergency.