The Gwich’in tribe of Northern Alaska have been hunting caribou in the Arctic National Wildlife Reserve for hundreds of years. They rely on the herd’s yearly migration for their survival and their way of life. The caribou migrate into the area to take advantage of the Spring grasses so their new born calves get the nutrition they need to survive the long, Arctic winter. 80% of these calves are born in the exact spot that is proposed for oil drilling – known to us simply by a number – 1002, but know to the Gwich’in as home. If area 1002 is developed for oil, this keystone species will be wiped out, along with the natural systems it supports. Almost 20 years after the Exxon Valdise oil spill in Southern Alaska, the Native American tribes of that area have still not been paid any compensation for the loss of their fisheries, even though they won that right in court – is it any wonder the Gwich’in are terrified of the possibilities of oil drilling in their home?

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