Chapter 15 : Tribal and Indigenous Communities. Impacts, Risks, and Adaptation in the United States: The Fourth National Climate Assessment, Volume II
Indigenous peoples' histories and shared experience engender distinct knowledge about climate change impacts and strategies for adaptation. Indigenous peoples' traditional knowledge systems can play a role in advancing understanding of climate change and in developing more comprehensive climate adaptation strategies.
Climate impacts to lands, waters, foods, and other plant and animal species threaten cultural heritage sites and practices that sustain intra- and intergenerational relationships built on sharing traditional knowledges, food, and ceremonial or cultural objects. Challenges to Indigenous actions to address disaster management and recovery, displacement, and relocation in the face of climate change include economic, social, political, and legal considerations that severely constrain their abilities to respond to rapid ecological shifts and complicate action toward safe and self-determined futures for these communities.