First Stewards Symposium: Coastal Peoples Address Climate Change

Date: Jul 17, 2012 - Jul 20, 2012

Where: National Museum of the American Indian, Washington D.C.

View Agenda >>

About the Event:

 Climate change—the variation in the Earth’s climate over time—is a pressing issue for coastal indigenous cultures, other coastal communities, and coastal and ocean resource managers. Some of the most dramatic and economically important effects include heat waves and drought in some areas. While in others, changing ocean conditions affect sea life that cultures depend on.

Because of their unique vulnerability, coastal indigenous cultures are leaders in societal adaptation and mitigation in response to climate change impacts. Exploring their experiences may hold great value and provide guidance as communities across the nation respond to our changing climate.

The symposium will bring together regional panels; Alaska; the U.S. Pacific states and territories; the Great Lakes, Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, Southeast, and Gulf of Mexico. Each day will include opening and closing cultural ceremonies, regional panels and symposium witnesses. These witnesses have been recognized for their knowledge of indigenous culture, language and traditions. Participants will share their insights on how coastal indigenous cultures and the nation as a whole are being affected by, and will need to adapt to, our changing climate.

For more information visit the First Stewards Website or go to
Click here for the agenda. You may also contact Chairman Micah McCarty at or call 360-640-0273

The National Museum of the American Indian has also developed this website: American Indian Responses to Environmental Challenges, in collaboration with four Native communities. The website documents how they are responding to environmental challenges in their homelands.