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Indigenous Peoples: Prayers and Protest in Copenhagen

COPENHAGEN, Denmark -- Indigenous Peoples, including delegations of youths and elders from North America, summoned President Obama to Copenhagen to make a commitment to climate change. In strong language, Indigenous Peoples demanded that the destruction of their homelands be halted and Obama live up to his promises.

"When Obama was campaigning, he captured the hearts of young people and he promised us change," said Kandi Mossett of North Dakota, Tribal Campus Climate Challenge Organizer for the Indigenous Environmental Network. Through tears of frustration she added, "But we are learning that for Native communities, when it comes to reining in oil companies or commiting to fight climate change, he is just another politician who goes back on his word. And on these issues, his decisions are matters of life and death for our people."

The Indigenous Peoples position statement, delivered to world leaders at the COP 15 Climate Summit stated, "We strongly call for a moratorium on all new exploration for oil, gas, coal and uranium as a first step towards the full phase-out of fossil fuels, without nuclear power, with a just transition to sustainable jobs, energy and environment. We oppose false solutions to the crisis: These include nuclear energy, geo-engineering techniques, so-called clean coal, and the carbon market."

Read the statement from the Indigenous Environmental Network below. Videos are posted at

Indigenous Environmental Network
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