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17 November 2020 Traditional Ecological Knowledge Policy Considerations for Abandoned Uranium Mines on Navajo Nation
Tommy Rock, Jani C. Ingram
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Abstract

Environmental justice is a prominent issue for Native American nations within the United States. One example is the abandoned uranium mines on the Navajo Nation that have been left unremediated since the Cold War. Often, environmental policy is developed for issues facing Native American nations that do not include input from those nations. Instead, Native American nations should have the opportunity to address environmental issues using their traditional ecological knowledge (TEK). TEK has ties to natural laws long respected by tribal communities; these laws provide the foundation for addressing the complex relationship between nature and humans. Often, policy development addressing environmental concerns is determined by non-Native American stakeholders, which can have negative effects on the Native American communities. These policies harm Native Americans rather than ultimately helping them. The focus of this discussion is how TEK can play a role in environmental policy development for the Navajo Nation surrounding abandoned uranium mines.

Copyright © 2020 Wayne State University Press, Detroit, Michigan 48201
Tommy Rock and Jani C. Ingram "Traditional Ecological Knowledge Policy Considerations for Abandoned Uranium Mines on Navajo Nation," Human Biology 92(1), 19-26, (17 November 2020). https://doi.org/10.13110/humanbiology.92.1.01
Received: 5 November 2019; Accepted: 4 May 2020; Published: 17 November 2020
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KEYWORDS
ABANDONED URANIUM MINES
environmental justice
NAVAJO FUNDAMENTAL LAWS
traditional ecological knowledge
TRADITIONAL KNOWLEDGE HOLDERS
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