Literature Review: Local and Traditional Knowledge in the Liard River Watershed

  • Author(s) / Creator(s)
  • The Liard River Basin is a complex, multi-jurisdictional watershed. The Liard River begins its journey in the Pelly Mountains of southeastern Yukon, flows through northeastern British Columbia, and then crosses into the Northwest Territories, where it drains into the Mackenzie River. There are roughly 9,000 people living in the Liard sub-basin. Most of the population is centered in Fort Nelson, BC and Watson Lake, Yukon. Fort Simpson, which lies at the confluence of the Liard and Mackenzie rivers is considered those in the Mackenzie-Great Bear Basin. First Nations people make up approximately 27% of the population. There are at least nine Aboriginal groups with historic or contemporary connections to the Liard River Watershed. Many of these groups relocated into British Columbia with the settlement of Alberta in the 19th century. There are limited sources of documented and available sources of local and traditional knowledge about most aspects of aquatic ecosystem health. As with other areas of the Mackenzie, these gaps do not reflect a lack of local and traditional knowledge, but limited resources and opportunities for research as well as a lack of socio-political security around intellectual property rights. Media reports suggest the need for more research; there are many concerns about the increasing pace and scale of resource development activities and their implications for First Nations and other communities in the Liard Basin and downstream communities. A cumulative effects perspective on resource development may prove valuable, given the long history of fur harvesting, forestry, mining, and petroleum extraction and the compounding problems of climate change.

  • Date created
  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Type of Item
  • DOI
  • License
    Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International