The Peel Watershed is a 77 000km2 area of untouched land draining 14% of the Yukon Territory and extending into the Northwest Territories. This area encompasses traditional territories of four first nations and is home to a huge array of animal and plant species. Interest in mineral staking as well as oil and gas exploration has led to heated negotiations over the past several years as to how much of the watershed should be protected and how much should be opened up to industry. The following video links give a general overview of the Peel Watershed and the controversy surrounding it.
The first video was made in 2009 to show the many cultures, species, and livelihoods that depend on the watershed, as well as the benefits and value of the watershed locally and nationally.
In response to the release of the most recent version of the Peel Watershed Regional Land Use Plan, several Yukon First Nations along with two environmental groups have issued a lawsuit. This video shows statements by some of the key leaders in this law suit, as to why they have strong opposition to the decisions that were made.
Questions to think about:
1. Using a One Health approach, who/what is affected by this plan?
2. In addition to other outcomes, environmental decisions often have a number of environmental and human health consequences. What are the potential negative human health impacts that could occur if this plan was to be accepted?
3. How will the existing Peel Watershed Regional Use Plan affect the watershed ecosystem? Will changes made to this ecosystem be recoverable once industry has left the area?
4. Using a one health approach, are there any human, environmental or animal benefits to opening this region, in whole or in portion, to industry?