Putting uncertainty under the cultural lens of Traditional Owners from the Great Barrier Reef Catchments

Lyons, Ilisapeci, Hill, Rosemary, Deshong, Samarla, Mooney, Gary, and Turpin, Gerry (2019) Putting uncertainty under the cultural lens of Traditional Owners from the Great Barrier Reef Catchments. Regional Environmental Change, 19 (6). pp. 1597-1610.

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Abstract

Indigenous peoples in Australia, and globally, are situated in an unusual context of both significant vulnerability and unique resilience to climate change which influence their perceptions of climate risk and uncertainty. Their vulnerability to climate change arises in part from their contexts of living in many of the harshest and isolated environments. Their resilience originates from their accumulated knowledge of specific environments over millennia, mediated through sui generis cultural institutions. Our results illustrate that indigenous groups primarily perceive uncertainties related to volition of actors and institutions. When they are involved in climate adaptation planning in ways that mobilise their cultural institutions and knowledge, they can safely manage these uncertainties through their agency to determine and control key risks. We demonstrate that climate justice approaches can be strengthened for indigenous peoples by applying a linked vulnerability-resilience analytical framework. This enables stronger consideration of how unique cultural institutions and knowledge, which are not available to all vulnerable groups, affect indigenous perceptions of uncertainty in climate adaptation planning. We use this analytical approach in a case study with Yuibera and Koinmerburra Traditional Owner groups within the Great Barrier Reef Catchment. We conclude that a specific focus on sui generis indigenous knowledge and cultural institutions as a source of resilience can strengthen climate justice approaches and work more effectively with indigenous peoples in climate change contexts.

Item ID: 60113
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1436-378X
Keywords: uncertainty, Indigenous peoples, climate adaptation planning, Great Barrier Reef (GBR)
Copyright Information: © The Author(s) 2019.
Projects and Grants: CSIRO Indigenous Futures and Great Barrier Reef Intiatives, NESP Earth Systems and Climate Change Hub
Date Deposited: 14 Aug 2019 07:45
FoR Codes: 05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0501 Ecological Applications > 050101 Ecological Impacts of Climate Change @ 50%
16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1604 Human Geography > 160403 Social and Cultural Geography @ 50%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9603 Climate and Climate Change > 960311 Social Impacts of Climate Change and Variability @ 100%
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