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RBMES 212th Arctic Council Ministerial meeting has started in Reykjavik, which marks the end of the Icelandic Chairmanship of the Arctic Council and the beginning of the Russian Federation’s Chairmanship for 2021-2023.

Arctic Council observer Association of World Reindeer Herders (WRH) is attending the meeting online with WRH Council President Sergey Khariuchi as the head of delegation, WRH Secretary General Anders Oskal, WRH Chair of the Board Inger Anita Smuk and WRH Vice-chair of the Board Alena Gerasimova. WRH together with the International Centre for Reindeer Husbandry (ICR) has been conducting the Arctic Council EALLU project since 2015, the project is led by the Arctic indigenous youth and aims to maintain and further develop a sustainable and resilient reindeer husbandry in the Arctic in face of climate change and globalization, working towards a vision of creating a better life for circumpolar reindeer herders. And today the youth statement by the EALLU project was presented by Sámi reindeer herder, PhD student and Arctic Council EALLU contributor Rávdná Biret Márjá E. Sara, on the occasion of the Ministerial meeting.

Is there a future for Arctic indigenous peoples in face of Arctic change?  

For millennia, the Arctic has been the homeland of a diversity of indigenous peoples. Indigenous knowledge has been the foundation of our resilience and adaptation since time immemorial. Indigenous knowledge is a different way of knowing, intertwined with our cultures, traditional ways of life and civilizations. As the Arctic is changing, the traditional economies and economic base of indigenous peoples needs to be strengthened, improved.

The traditional economies of Arctic indigenous peoples were always circular – take only what you need, utilize everything you take, and share. 

Our youth carries our future. How can we best manage our own destinies?

Watch the EALLU Youth statement here

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