Appearing before the House Interior Sub-Committee on Indian Affairs and Public Lands Prudhoe Bay gas pipeline oversight hearings on March 17th, Mayor Eben Hopson said ". . . our government has an obligation to treat the Canadian Native land claims just as fairly as it has dealt with the Alaska Native land claims. Mr. Chairman, our land claims are based upon the legal doctrine of aboriginal rights, a doctrine long upheld in our courts. Aboriginal rights are human rights. Like other Americans, I am pleased our new President has instructed our government to protect and promote human rights in the conduct of our foreign relations. As our nation becomes more dependent upon new frontier oil and gas reserves in Canada and other countries, we will have to shoulder the burden of responsibility for insuring these reserves are developed without damaging or compromising aboriginal rights of Native people. Thus, the entire Native land claims issue can be seen as an important national energy policy consideration." Hopson went on to say that the broad Canadian and U.S. political support for the Arctic Gas Mackenzie Valley route indicated an inevitable U.S./Canadian Arctic energy partnership that will succeed only if broad Arctic coastal zone management agreements are negotiated between Canada and the United States.
Inupiat leaders from Greenland and Canada came to Barrow late March and early April to plan their participation in the first Inuit Circumpolar Conference to he held in Barrow during the week of June 13th. Carl Christian Olsen, director of International Programs for Greenland's Knud Rasmussen Hojskole and Mark Gordon, Executive Director of the Inuit Tapirisat of Canada (ITC) met, in Barrow with Mayor Eben Hopson and his staff to plan the Conference agenda and post-Conference objectives Olsen was in Barrow during the last week of March, and Gordon, accompanied by his assistants, Greg Fiske and Wendy Ellis, visited during the first week of April. Ellis. a long-time employee of ITC, was actively involved ii the planning and conduct of the Arctic Peoples Conference held in Copenhagen in 1973.
When the NSB was asked to participate in Washington in the drafting of the National Petroleum Reserves Production Act of 1976, which de-militarized the Naval Petroleum Reserve No. 4 and transferred the Reserve to the Department of Interior, Mayor Eben Hopson succeeded in including Section 105 (c) (1) that created an inter-agency NPR-4 Task Force to join a number of Interior agencies with State agencies and the NSB and Arctic Slope Regional Corporation to produce a comprehensive NPR-4 land use plan. The NSB saw this Task Force as an opportunity to establish, at the same time, a workable inter-agency coastal zone management planning process which might be replicated for the entire Arctic coast. But it is not working out that way. Rather, NSB officials view the NPR-4 Task Force as evolving into a $4 million bureaucratic boondoggle in which both the NSB and the State is reluctant to participate. Rather than creating an inter-agency task force of equals able to develop a land use plan for NPR-4 in which all could have confidence, the Interior Department has used the task Force as an opportunity to increase Interior agency budgets, and any real participation of NSB or State planners on the Task Force has been foreclosed simply by refusing to budget for it. Mayor Eben Hopson has written to Interior Secretary Cecil Andrus about this problem. Meanwhile, with Federal geologists publicly speculating that NPR-4 may not be the vast oil and gas reserve the Federal government has always claimed it to be, NSB planners feel that the work of the TASK Force should include alternative use options if commercial quantities of planners suggest that its status as a National Petroleum Reserve, which restricts many use options, might be changed, and the NPR-4 Task Force should begin now to take this possibility into consideration.
Former U.S. Ambassador John Norton Moore, long-time chief U.S. delegate to the U.S.S.R's Law of the Sea Conference, now Director of the Center for Oceans Law and Policy, University of Virginia, wrote to Mayor Eben Hopson 017 March 5th to recommend that the Borough take a number of steps in its pursuit of Federal Arctic domestic and foreign policies in support of a circumpolar Arctic Coastal Zone Management Program.
They include: 1. Organization of a conference or advisory panel on environmental standards for offshore Arctic oil development. This should be sponsored by the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) or by Interior Department in conjunction with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). 2. An immediate effort by the State Department to negotiate with Canada and Denmark an agreement about sound Arctic OCS operations. 3. A long-run effort by the State Department to negotiate standards with all five Arctic Coastal Zone nations for Arctic OCS operations, and for on-going review mechanisms able to incorporate new OCS technology as it is developed. 4. Discussions between the NSB, State of Alaska, and the major multi-national oil corporations expected to participate in Arctic OCS operations, on the procedures through which the oil industry can participate in Arctic OCS standards development and negotiations. 5. Initiation of on-going discussions with such agencies as the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA), NOAA and the Coast Guard to explore ways to enable longer and more certain access by sea to the Arctic Coast, leading to improved maritime shipping to Arctic coastal communities, and close surveillance of commercial submarine navigation plans that may be developing in connection with Arctic oil and gas operations. 6. Initiation of discussions with the new Secretary of the Navy about the future of the Naval Arctic Research Laboratory in Arctic Coastal zone management. 7. Initiate formal discussions of studies of Bowhead Whale stocks as mandated by the Whale Conservation and Study Act of 1976 with NOAA, and with Senator Lowell Weicker, with a view to speeding up these studies. 8. Explore ways of including the Arctic Coastal Zone Management Program as a project of the national Coastal Zone Management Program as administered by NOAA, an agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce, and the State of Alaska.
While in Washington, D.C. to testify before the gas pipeline oversight hearings, Mayor Eben Hopson met with Morris Busby, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Oceans, Environment and Science, to discuss the objectives of the NSB Arctic Coastal Zone Management Program, and the need for the State Department to develop an Arctic foreign policy similar to the Antarctic policy. Among other State Department officials present was Karl Joneitz, Environmental Affairs Officer from State's Office of Canadian Affairs. Busby, a former Coast guard officer and Navy official is deputy to Patsy Mink, former U.S. Representative from Hawaii, and now Assistant Secretary of State for Oceans, Environment and Science. Hopson was accompanied by his assistant, Jon Buchholdt, and by Tom Smyth, a planning consultant to the NSB. This was the first meeting with State Department officials since Carter was inaugurated. The meeting went well, but was inconclusive. Busby seemed sympathetic and better able to grasp the objectives of the NSB's Arctic CZM program, and of the first Inuit Circumpolar Conference than were the Foreign Service Officers present. Busby promised to present Hopson's views and objectives to Patsy Mink and get back to the NSB with a plan of action, but, as of a month later, no word had been heard.
Mayor Eben Hopson has written to Secretary of State Cyrus Vance to ask about the history and status of the Jay Treaty that guarantees unrestricted intercourse between Native American citizens of the United States and Canada. He asked if it would be possible to negotiate with Denmark to bring Greenlandic Inupiat under the protections of the Jay Treaty as a way of recognizing Greenland's status as a North American community, and Greenland's 40,000 Inupiat as part of the North American Native community. Hopson also asked if Greenland's status as "North Denmark", which enables European common market nations free access to Greenland's fisheries, might not have implications for the Monroe Doctrine. One of the big questions facing Greenlandic Homerule negotiators is Greenland's status in the Common Market. The Greenlandic fishing fleet, one of the only economic mainstays of Greenland's economy, would like not to have to share Greenland's territorial fisheries with other better equipped common market fleets. The Monroe Doctrine was intended to arrest European political and economic control in North and South America.
Otto Bastiansen, Rector of the University of Oslo wrote to Inupiat University of the Arctic President Lyle Wright to say that no University in Scandinavia or the USSR is further North than Barrow's Inupiat University, and that it can claim tie undisputed title of the Northern-most University in the world.
In earlier issues of the Newsletter, efforts by the Canadian oil industry and the Canadian government to undercut and discredit the Committee for Original Peoples Entitlement (COPE), Inuvik, NWT, were reported. Dome Petroleum's organization of the Beaufort Sea Community Advisory Committee and the Washington D.C. Canadian Embassy's stall efforts to discredit COPE and its president Sam Raddi, were followed in March by the organization of the Western Arctic Inupiat Association, according to Sam Raddi and his staff at COPE. The counter-organizational effort was led by John Steen, member of the Northwest Territorial Council, an arm of Canada's Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development. He was assisted in its organization by his brother, Vincent Steen, a Vice President of the Inuit Association was organized to oppose COPE's decision to break away from the ITC's Northwest Territorial land claims settlement negotiations to press for an Inuvialuit Western Arctic regional land claims settlement under the pressure of the proposed Mackenzie Valley gas pipeline that would be built across Inuvialuit lands. The Inuvialuit decided to break away to pursue a regional settlement when ITC failed to make timely progress with their Territory-wide settlement negotiations. The Western Arctic Inupiat Association is concerned that the Western Arctic land claims may impede timely approval of the Arctic Gas Mackenzie Valley gas pipeline with its jobs and business opportunities. It would like to see the gas line approved while the Northwest Territorial land claims are being negotiated. The Inuvialuit regional claims being developed by COPE: appear to endanger approval of the pipeline. COPE regards the Western Arctic Inupiat Assn. to have been inspired by such Inuvik businessmen as Tom Butters, editor and publisher of Inuvik's weekly, The Drum, and a non-Native Territorial politician.
Mayor Eben Hopson has secured NSB Assembly approval for the establishment of an innovative new Department of Conservation and Environmental Security, and has appointed his Special Assistant, Billy Neakok, to become its first director. Neakok, as the Borough's new Director of Conservation and Environmental Security, will head up a new Department that will combine the Borough's existing game management and with the NSB's CZM and environmental protection programs to form a Department able to identify, assess and document all land, environment and property Values on the Arctic Slope, and work to protect existing terrestrial, aquatic, and atmospheric ecological balance. It will operate as a municipal environmental protection agency, and will move to establish municipal taxes tied to measurable land, air, and water quality degradation. Neakok, who is the Borough's project officer for the First Inuit Circumpolar Conference, will move to join with the Inuvialuit of Canada's Western Arctic to establish an international caribou management program. Neakok is anxious for his new Department to deal effectively with all aspects of oil and gas development by developing Borough regulations to require all industrial operators to secure Borough permits for all surface disturbing activity.
Elle-Han'sa, a leader of the Sami in Sweden, wrote Do the NSB from Aotearoa (the aboriginal name for Australia) where he is working to bring that continent's indigenous people into the World Council of Indigenous People, organized at the first World Conference of Indigenous People at Port Alberni, B.C. in the fall of 1976. The NSB was represented at this Conference by Billy Neakok. Elle-Han'sa said that the Sami community of Scandinavia will send a delegation of observers to the Inuit Circumpolar Conference in Barrow in June, and invited NSB officials to attend the second World Conference of Indigenous People planned for 1978 in Sweden. With his letter, Elle-Han'sa sent a poem, The Circle of Life. Because it expresses much of the purpose and spirit of the Arctic Coastal Zone Management Program, his poem has been reproduced in this issue of the Newsletter.
Probably no single person is more closely identified with the Native land claims movement than is Charles Edwardsen, Jr., the NSB's director of Washington, D.C. Liaison. Disturbed by the lack of economic and political cooperation between the NSB and the Arctic Slope Regional Corporation, Edwardsen led a proxy fight this year that resulted in his defeat of former ASRC President Joseph Upicksoun for the at-large seat on the ASRC board of directors. Edwardsen voted well over 300,000 shares, the largest amount voted for a single candidate in the annual shareholder's election late in March. Edwardsen, who played a leading role in the organization of the NSB in 1972, has always regarded the ASRC and the NSB as the two main reciprocal parts of what he calls the Arctic Slope Inupiat's "capital engine" able to protect the land while it yield's its sub-surface national wealth. Edward Hopson, older brother of NSB Mayor Eben Hopson, was elected to replace Upicksoun as ASRC President.
According to ITC Executive Director Mark Gordon, the James Bay hydro-electric project, now underway, has replaced the Trans-Alaska Oil Pipeline as the largest private construction project in the history of the world. Gordon was vaulted to international prominence in the Land Claims Movement when he served as Chief Negotiator for the Northern Quebec Inuit Association in land claims settlement negotiations that led to the historic James Bay agreement that settled the claims of the Inuit and the Cree Indians of Northern Quebec. The NQIA will receive $93 million from that agreement by the end of 1982. This money will go to the NQIA's Makivik Corporation for the benefit of its 3,000 Inuit members resident in Northern Quebec. This large settlement was made to clear the way for the James Bay project of Hydro-Quebec, the largest electrical utility corporation in the world. The James Bay hydro-electric project will build over 400 miles of dikes and dams; re-route entire rivers the size of the Kuskokwim and Porcupine; and cost an estimated $30 Billion! The project is scheduled for completion in the early 1980s.
The agenda for the first Inuit Circumpolar Conference has been set after meetings in Barrow with Canada's Mark Gordon, and Greenland's Karl Elias Olsen and Carl Christian Olsen. Even though the Conferees will be in Barrow during its festive Naluqatak (whale festival), the delegates will be scheduled to work 12-hour days to adopt a charter or constitution for what is now being called the Inupiat (or Inuit?) Circumpolar Assembly, a North American Inupiat organization of Alaska, Canadian and Greenlandic regional associations and organizations. Once adopted, officers will be elected, and a two-day round of formal Executive Committee hearings aimed at formulating Inupiat Circumpolar Assembly policies and work programs for FY 1978. Those receiving this newsletter will be receiving Conference materials, including the proposed agenda, beginning on May 1st. Mayor Hopson Intends to keep sending agenda material to all on the Newsletter's mailing list until one week before the Conference.
NSB School District Superintendent John Antonnen, one of Alaska's most highly regarded educational administrators, joined with Carl Christian Olsen, Director of International Programs for Greenland's Knud Rasmussen Hojskole, and Edna Ahgeak MacLean, University of Alaska to develop a plan for educational exchange between Knud Rasmussen Hojskole, Sisimiut, the Greenland Teacher 'Training College, Nuuk, Barrow High School, and the University of Alaska's Barrow Extension Center Program. The U. of A. will work in cooperation with Inupiat University of the Arctic. The exchange programs planned 1977-78 academic year objectives include the employment of two Greenlandic teachers for the Barrow High School; two NSB Inupiat teacher Aides or Inupiaq language curriculum material developers to attend the Greenland Teacher Training College in Nuuk, Greenland; and two Barrow High School students to attend the Knud Rasmussen Hojskole in Sisimiut. 1978-79 objectives call for a Greenlandic teacher at the Barrow High School; two students from either Knud Rasmussen or the Greenland Teacher Training College to attend Barrow High School or the Inupiat University of the Arctic; two students from Barrow High to attend Knud Rasmussen; and two NSB School District teachers or aides to attend the Greenland Teacher Training College. Annual cost of the program is estimated to be around $90,000, possibly to be provided by the Federal Johnson-O'Malley Program. The program plan is being submitted to both the NSB School Board and the Inuit Circumpolar Conference for approval and ratification. The agreement was a significant victory for Knud Rasmussen's Department of International Programs, but just as it was being approved by the NSB School District, Knud Rasmussen learned that Greenland's Danish-controlled Land Council had decided to defend Knud Rasmussen's international programs, apparently for political reasons relating to Knud Rasmussen's pro-Greenlandic Homerule and international Native land claims movement activities. NSB officials have given Knud Rasmussen Hojskole private assurances that if its international programs department is defended, alternative funding will be arranged in the United States.
The NSB Planning Commission is reviewing two completed documents prepared to document historic Inupiat community and family use of Beaufort Sea coastal zone lands that may be impacted by Beaufort Sea OCS program and Prudhoe Bay gas pipeline construction. NSB Planner Flossie Hopson completed an extensive inventory of several categories of historic use. A typical entry:
Old site. Ruins, graves. Shelter cabins.
Graves and ruins located 2.5 miles south coast,Bear Creek.
Families: Itchuagak, Patkotak, Koganak.
70 02' 20"
Old site. Ruins, graves. Shelter cabins. Graves and ruins located 2.5 miles south coast,Bear Creek. Families: Itchuagak, Patkotak, Koganak.
Covering the area between the Colville River east to the Canadian Border, from the coast to the foothills of the Brooks range, including the Prudhoe Bay oil field, there are over 120 such entries that document historic use of this area by the people of Nuiqsut and Kaktovik. Another report, authored by NSB Planning consultant Jon Nielson, approached the same problem from the academic angle. His Beaufort Sea Study/I-Historic and Subsistence Site Inventory is the result of a literature search conducted at the University of Alaska Library and over forty other institutions and libraries in the U.S., Canada and Great Britain, Blended into the Study are accounts of voyages of exploration, and the annals of such writers as the Rev. Fred Klerekoper, and others who worked and wrote on the Arctic Slope over the past 60 years. The work of I-Hopson and Nielsen bring together the historic city of traditional use with verbal history and site-specific evidence of historic use of the Beaufort Sea coastal zone by Arctic Slope Inupiat. Both inventories are being printed by the NSB planning Department and are available from NSB Borough Planning Director Herb Bartel.
Official of the Knud Rasmussen Hojskole, Greenland's cultural institute to which Land Council has delegated planning Greenlandic participation in the Inuit Circumpolar Conference, have provided the NSB with a preliminary list of likely delegates to the Conference. There may be changes, but so far the list includes:
Professor Robert Peterson, leader of the Greenlandic delegation, Institute for Eskimologi, Copenhagen, Denmark Hans Lynge, Kalaallit Atuakkiortut Peqatigiiffiat (Greenlandic Authors Assn.), Nuuk, Greenland Otto Steenholdt, member, Danish Folketing (parliament), and Copenhagen Ado Lynge, President, Greenlandic Municipal Councils Association, Ausiait Helene Rasager, Greenland Public Information Organization, Nuuk Odak Olsen, Greenland Workers Union, Nuuk Ulrik Rosing, Greenlandic Fishermens' and Hunters' Union, Nuuk Ak'igssiak Miller, Greenland Teacher Training College, Nuuk Kristian Poulsen, Kuagagdliutit/Gronlandsposten, Nuuk Nils Henrik Lynge, Greenland Radio, Nuuk Moses Olsen, Former Folketing member and leader of the Greenland Home rule Movement, Sisimiut David K'Aviak', Greenland Youth Association, K'aanaaq (Thule) Eskild Jeremiassen or Kaj Egede, Greenland Sheep farmers' Association, Igaliko Karl Elis Olsen, Knud Rasmussen Hojskole, Sisimiut
Greenland Land Council representation has not yet been determined. And while Otto Steenholdt will represent Greenland's Siumut party, Atassut party representation has not yet been determined. Both the Atassut and Siumut parties support Greenlandic Homerule, with the Atassut being the more pro-Danish and conservative of the two. The Greenlandic delegation will be accompanied by four resource people from the Homerule Commission, Land Council Secretariat, IWGIA, and the Secretariat for Gronlandsraadet, and two translators.
Judge Sadie Neakok, magistrate in Barrow for 30 years, and one of two Eskimo judges in rural Alaska (the other was Nora Guinn, Yupik, of Bethel) who distinguished themselves as jurists able to deal fairly with cross cultural problems of bush justice, retired from the bench on April 15, 1977. Judge Neakok attended the Barrow BIA Day School, graduated from high school at Willard High on the Presidio of San Francisco;attended Stanford University for two years, and graduated from the University of Alaska in 1938. Returning to Barrow, she worked as a dietitian at the U.S. Public Health Service Hospital in Barrow, and as a teacher at the Barrow Day School before becoming U.S. Commissioner for Barrow during Territorial days, a job that required her to act as a Federal social worker and Social Security Program representative. After Statehood, Judge Neakok became a magistrate, and has served in that capacity continuously since that time. In 1964, she received national publicity for her role in the famous Barrow "Duck-in" demonstration when she refused to handle cases that effectively outlawed duck hunting on the Arctic Slope. She recently announced that she would not handle cases against subsistence caribou hunters, choosing to support aboriginal rights to subsistence hunting necessary for good family nutrition. Judge Neakok is the daughter of the late "King of the Arctic" Charles Brewer, and knew Tom Gordon, her father's life-long friend, and Great-Grandfather of ITC Executive Director Mark Gordon. Judge Neakok has received numerous awards and public honors during her career, and represented the Arctic Slope at government and social functions throughout the United States for many years. Withal, she is also mother to 12 children, the eldest being NSB Director of Conservation and Environmental Security Billy Neakok. Together with her husband, Nate, she plans to devote her time to the traditional life of hunting, whaling and fishing. Both are in good health.
When he visited with Mayor Eben Hopson in Barrow in early April, Mark Gordon said that the Inuit Tapirisat will push for changes in the Migratory Birds Treaty to decriminalize duck hunting in the Arctic. Hopson provided Gordon with a copy of the recent U.S./USSR migratory birds treaty which provides for subsistence hunting and egg gathering by the indigenous inhabitants of the Chukchi and Koryaksk national regions, the Commander Islands, and the State of Alaska. Both Gordon and Hopson have made efforts with their governments to bring the U.S./Canadian migratory birds treaty into line with traditional subsistence hunting that persists in spite of the treaty. Gordon told Hopson that the Canadian authorities blame U.S. intransigence for its failure to negotiate on this point, and last July, 1976, U.S. State Department blamed the Canadian government. Both Gordon and Hopson decided that both their governments were mistaken in their perceptions, and agreed to use the Inuit Circumpolar Conference to focus attention on this problem of justice. Last fall, David Friday, leader of Yupik game management and environmental conservation programs in the Yukon-Kuskokwim delta, wired ITC asking the Migratory Birds Treaty with Canada and Mexico be placed on the Conference agenda. In the meantime, Mayor Eben Hopson has written to U.S. Secretary of State Cyrus Vance to request that representatives knowledgeable about the Migratory Birds Treaty be sent to the Inuit Circumpolar Conference to meet with Canadian Counterparts from Canada's Department of External Affairs, and to brief the conferees on the Status of the Treaty, and any contemplated changes.
The Creator made
the Earth round The Earth is small
and very sensitive Freedom means to
be in your right element, If you can't fence
the air in square pieces. Time has come when
Mall will discover The Circle of
He made the Grass and the Trees
the Birds, Fish and Animals
to follow the purpose of His Creation,
and He made the four races of Mankind
black, white, yellow, brown
and placed them in the East, North, West and South
He made the Sun, the Moon and the Stars
and asked them to form circles
so that we should understand
the Wisdom and Meaning of Life.
Because Life as the Creator meant it
is a circle: from the Creator
to the Creator, the Circle of Life.
All Creation has to share the same sources of living,
this is as true as night follows day.
The same Air
that refreshes the peoples of the arctic North
and gives relief to the drought-stricken peoples of the South also is filled with the war-cries of the East
and surrounds the polluted cities of the West,
How long will it last?
to be linked to the purpose of Creation,
to be a part of History, its past, present and future.
The bird is free only in the air, the fish only in the water.
Have you ever known of birds
that wanted to live under water
or a fish that wanted to build its nest in the trees!
I have. I know of men
who themselves wanted to be Masters of History
who made their God silent and dead
and cut the Earth into square pieces.
Will we survive under these masters?
"If we don't survive as a people
following the instruction and purpose of the Creation
then we must ask: What is the purpose of survival?"
how can you sell the Earth?
But now the Water, the Earth and even the Air
suffers because Man has placed himself
in the center instead of God.
the darkness around him
that power, intelligence. wealth and glory
is not enough to save his soul.
Then maybe they will listen
to the Wisdom and Understanding of those People
whom they regarded as small and worthless,
the Indigenous Peoples of the Earth.
They will ask for our help and we must give it:
Unless the Creator is the Center of the Circle
unless we make Him the ruler of our lives
there will be no equality, no brotherhood or freedom
among the children of the Creation.
Only when we are a part of this Chain
of caring and sharing
will there he peace on Earth.
The only freedom we ever got
is to choose between Yes and No.
is to become a part of Eternity.
The Great Spirit links us together,
He made us different not to control each other
but to contribute,
not to sell or take
not even to give,
but. to share.
The Voice of the Creator
we can hear only when we listen,
just like the Wind
that refreshes suffering Mankind
We can't see it, yet it is there.
We don't know from where it comes
or where it goes...
The Creator made
the Earth round
The Earth is small
and very sensitive
Freedom means to
be in your right element,
If you can't fence
the air in square pieces.
Time has come when
Mall will discover
The Circle of