Climate Change Impacts on Canadian Arctic Tundra Ecosystems - Metis Traditional Knowledge Study
Principal Investigator: Grieve, Sheryl (4)
Licence Number: 14226
Organization: North Slave Metis Alliance
Licenced Year(s): 2010 2009 2008 2007
Issued: Aug 01, 2007
Project Team: Claudia Haas (Biologist, North Slave Metis Alliance), Shannon Hayden (Traditional Knowledge, North Slave Metis Alliance)

Objective(s): The purpose of this project is to collect MTtis traditional knowledge on vegetation and terrain changes in the North Slave region. This project is part of a larger IPY study, CiCAT, that is looking at the effect of climate change on arctic tundra ecosystems.

Project Description: This project is part of a larger IPY study, CiCAT, that is looking at the effect of climate change on arctic tundra ecosystems. The researchers will be collecting Métis traditional knowledge on vegetation and terrain changes in the North Slave region. In addition, they will be collecting and commenting on the scientific methodology for the larger CiCAT project. They hope to provide an integral component to this IPY project, connecting and melding scientific studies with knowledge from people that live on the land.

First, the researchers are planning a meeting for North Slave Métis Alliance (NSMA) members to discuss this project. This will be an open forum to finalize the locations for the on-land portion of the study and finalizing the methodology. At this meeting they will also be choosing elders and youth to participate in the on-land activities.

Sites in the North Slave region, which have been identified by NSMA members as being of particular importance to address the effects of climate change, will be visited by the NSMA staff Biologist, the NSMA staff Anthropologist and selected members (as chosen during first meeting). At each of these sites they will spend a minimum of two days. On the first day they will conduct scientific vegetation surveys, berry surveys and soil transects. They will take a walking tour of the site and familiarize themselves with the area. The staff Biologist will collect scientific data as per CiCAT protocols and the elders will be able to observe and participate, providing their comments on the methodology. During this time any incidental traditional knowledge will be recorded. The second day will include an informal discussion on the previous day’s activities, possibly conducting more experimentation as decided by the group, and collection of any further traditional knowledge of the area.
After the fieldwork is completed, the researchers will hold another meeting open to NSMA members to discuss the results of the study and to determine any additional dissemination of results (e.g. publication). This will provide an opportunity for members that did not participate in the on-land activities to provide their traditional knowledge on what they have observed, comment on any results from the activities, and provide direction for the second year of activities.

In addition to this work, collaborators from other CiCAT projects working in the North Slave region (namely out of Daring Lake) will be meeting with NSMA researchers to discuss scientific methodology and incorporation of traditional knowledge.

At the end of the research, a report with findings will be produced and circulated to interested groups. At the end of each field season, summary reports will be produced for the ARI and IPY offices. Scientific data collected will be passed on to relevant collaborators for their use and publication.

NSMA members will be given first priority, and other First Nation members will be given second priority to participate in the field research. Approximately five elders and youth will participate at each survey location. NSMA staff will participate as directors of the research and the project.

Fieldwork will be conducted from August 1 to October 15, 2007 in the North Slave region, on three to six locations yet to be selected.