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Open Climate Webinar: Indigenous knowledge, land and body

With Kyle White (University of Michigan), Janet Maro (Sustainable Agriculture Tanzania) and

Alex Boyd (Intercultural Roots)

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In this first session in the series we explore some of many unheard perspectives. We will explore the role that Indigenous ecological knowledge plays in decolonising climate agendas, such as those advanced recently at COP26. Indigenous futures do not fixate on crisis, but are often embedded in regenerative healing and spiritual knowledge. What does this say about Western colonial climate agendas, and the focus on finance and economic development?

This event will focus on land based solutions to climate change drawing on grassroots agro-ecology. We will explore the importance of bodily perspectives in combatting anxiety in times of upheaval and confusion.

KYLE WHYTE is George Willis Pack Professor of Environment and Sustainability at the University of Michigan, teaching in the environmental justice specialisation. His research addresses environmental justice, focusing on moral and political issues concerning climate policy and Indigenous peoples, the ethics of cooperative relationships between Indigenous peoples and science organisations, and problems of Indigenous justice in public and academic discussions of food sovereignty, environmental justice, and the Anthropocene. He is an enrolled member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation.

JANET MARO is a leading Tanzanian social entrepreneur and agro-ecologist. In 2011, she founded Sustainable Agriculture Tanzania (SAT), an umbrella organisation that acts as the main centre for organic and sustainable agriculture in this country. Sustenance agriculture is an important strategy for the sustainable protection of native forest in Eastern Africa. The SAT Farmer Training Centre has thus far trained more than 1,000 people from Africa, Europe, America and Scandinavia on Sustainable Land Management (SLM). Janet was finalist for the Tanzania Women of Achievement Awards (2013), as well as finalist for the Guardian International Development Achievement Award, also in 2013. She featured in National Geographic’s “The Next Green Revolution” issue, where she discusses ecological organic agriculture in her country. In 2017, Sustainable Agriculture Tanzania won the first Lush Spring Prize Award for Established Projects.

ALEX BOYD is the Founder and Director of Intercultural Roots, and a Qi Gong Teacher. He has spent most of his life learning from Taoist arts and Chinese embodied culture, a millennial tradition that considers humanity as an integral part of nature through a connection between earth and sky. The Taoist arts Alex inherited from his Chinese teachers cultivate a felt-sense for harmony and, through energetic, breath and movement practices, enable a life in balance in times of ecological disharmony.

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