Projects: Towards Energy Security in NunatuKavut
NunatuKavut, meaning ‘our ancient land’, encompasses the central and south eastern portion of Labrador. NunatuKavut is home to a distinct population of Inuit who have long remained connected to the land, sea, and ice of their territory. NunatuKavut communities are working towards wholistic sustainability, balancing a complex web of resources, opportunities and threats that allow them to continue to live according to their culture and values. Currently, all coastal NunatuKavut communities are reliant on diesel fuel for power generation. Community members view diesel as reliable, safe and effective, but there are concerns about how diesel impacts individual and community health as well as environmental sustainability. Renewable energy alternatives could provide an alternate pathway to sustainability, offering greater autonomy and energy security, however discussions about energy transitions must be embedded within culture and community, and defined by Inuit governance structures.
Connor and Victoria (Research Assistants, Dalhousie University) have been developing the second phase of this project; they are developing research questions and methods that will collect perspectives on the impacts, strengths and opportunities that came out of the NATURE Youth Council program. Connor and Victoria are hoping to engage NATURE Youth Council members in discussions about their favourite parts of the program, as well as challenges and suggestions for future iterations. They are also hoping to engage with program and research team leaders on their thoughts on the program. They have submitted their proposal to their institutional ethics board and are awaiting approval. In addition to their research, they’re working on grant applications to support ongoing sustainability research in NunatuKavut.