Re-imagining environmental governance: Gold dredge mining vs Territorial Health in the Colombian Amazon.
ABSTRACT: This article describes and analyses an encounter in the Colombian Amazon between Indigenous practices and arrangements to manage their environment and the conservation policies of the State. Indigenous peoples understand their world as populated by powerful human and nonhuman beings; for them, the moral duty of achieving happiness and abundance for all implies sustaining reciprocal and respectful relations with these beings (including the State). In contrast Colombian environmental policy distinguishes between nature and culture, seeking to safeguard landscapes from human interference so that natural processes can unfold unhindered. In practice these partially connected, yet incommensurable worldviews make for a 'perfect storm' - opening opportunities for illegal mining. Drawing on recent fieldwork among the Andoke, an ethnic group well acquainted with extractivism in its different historical modalities and presently affronting the fallout of gold dredge mining we narrate how a parallel, non-state governance system makes it difficult for them to care for their land and entertain mutual and respectful relations with human and nonhuman beings (which we translate as 'territorial health'). We conclude by arguing for the need to re-imagine environmental governance in ways that more closely engage with what we call pluriversal governance: a form of (environmental) governance that does ontological justice to those involved in the environmental conflict - including, crucially, Indigenous people.
Project description:State-controlled protected areas (PAs) have dominated conservation strategies globally, yet their performance relative to other governance regimes is rarely assessed comprehensively. Furthermore, performance indicators of forest PAs are typically restricted to deforestation, although the extent of forest degradation is greater. We address these shortfalls through an empirical impact evaluation of state PAs, Indigenous Territories (ITs), and civil society and private Conservation Concessions (CCs) on deforestation and degradation throughout the Peruvian Amazon. We integrated remote-sensing data with environmental and socio-economic datasets, and used propensity-score matching to assess: (i) how deforestation and degradation varied across governance regimes between 2006-2011; (ii) their proximate drivers; and (iii) whether state PAs, CCs and ITs avoided deforestation and degradation compared with logging and mining concessions, and the unprotected landscape. CCs, state PAs, and ITs all avoided deforestation and degradation compared to analogous areas in the unprotected landscape. CCs and ITs were on average more effective in this respect than state PAs, showing that local governance can be equally or more effective than centralized state regimes. However, there were no consistent differences between conservation governance regimes when matched to logging and mining concessions. Future impact assessments would therefore benefit from further disentangling governance regimes across unprotected land.
Project description:Foreign investment in Africa's mineral resources has increased dramatically. This paper addresses three questions raised by this trend: do commercial mining investments increase the likelihood of social or armed conflict? If so, when are these disputes most prevalent? And, finally, what mechanisms help explain these conflicts? I show, first, that mining has contrasting effects on social and armed conflict: while the probability of protests or riots increases (roughly doubling) after mining starts, there is no increase in rebel activity. Second, I show that the probability of social conflict rises with plausibly exogenous increases in world commodity prices. Finally, I compile additional geo-spatial and survey data to explore potential mechanisms, including reporting bias, environmental harm, in-migration, inequality, and governance. Finding little evidence consistent with these accounts, I develop an explanation related to incomplete information-a common cause of conflict in industrial and international relations. This mechanism rationalizes why mining induces protest, why these conflicts are exacerbated by rising prices, and why transparency dampens the relationship between prices and protest.
Project description:Environmental, social and governance pressures should feature in future scenario planning about the transition to a low carbon future. As low-carbon energy technologies advance, markets are driving demand for energy transition metals. Increased extraction rates will augment the stress placed on people and the environment in extractive locations. To quantify this stress, we develop a set of global composite environmental, social and governance indicators, and examine mining projects across 20 metal commodities to identify the co-occurrence of environmental, social and governance risk factors. Our findings show that 84% of platinum resources and 70% of cobalt resources are located in high-risk contexts. Reflecting heightened demand, major metals like iron and copper are set to disturb more land. Jurisdictions extracting energy transition metals in low-risk contexts are positioned to develop and maintain safeguards against mining-related social and environmental risk factors.
Project description:A recent proposal to regulate mining within Indigenous Lands (ILs) threatens people and the unique ecosystems of Brazil's Legal Amazon. Here, we show that this new policy could eventually affect more than 863,000 km2 of tropical forests—20% more than under current policies—assuming all known mineral deposits will be developed and impacts of mining on forests extend 70 km from lease boundaries. Not only are these forests home to some of the world's most culturally diverse communities, they also provide at least US $5 billion each year to the global economy, producing food, mitigating carbon emissions, and regulating climate for agriculture and energy production. It is unclear whether new mines within ILs will be required to compensate for their direct and indirect environmental and social impacts but failing to do so will have considerable environmental and social consequences. Graphical Abstract Highlights • Mining within Indigenous Lands may impact 20% more forests than the current scenario• Proposed bill could affect forests providing at least $5 billion in ecosystem services annually• Impact assessments must comply with best practices to safeguard ecosystems and people Science for Society In February 2020, Brazilian President Bolsonaro signed a bill (PL 191/2020) that would permit mining inside Indigenous Lands, a unique category of protected area covering 23% of the Legal Amazon. In this study, we assess the potential impacts of this proposed legislation. We find that this proposal threatens 863,000 km2 of Amazon forests. These forests are home to 222 culturally unique indigenous groups and provide more than US $5 billion annually to society. The social and environmental impacts caused by new mines will unlikely be mitigated given the lack of environmental requirements and safeguards to indigenous rights in the current proposal. This policy could have long-lasting negative effects for Brazil's socio-biodiversity. The impacts of proposed legislation to allow mining within Indigenous Lands in the Brazilian Amazon could affect a large extent of forests—up to 20% more than the potentially affected area under current trends of mining expansion. These forests are home to 222 culturally unique indigenous groups, and it is estimated to provide more than US $5 billion annually in benefits for society; their loss will impact Brazil's socio-biodiversity.
Project description:BACKGROUND:There is a complicated and exploitative history of research with Indigenous peoples and accompanying calls to meaningfully and respectfully include Indigenous knowledge in healthcare. Storytelling approaches that privilege Indigenous voices can be a useful tool to break the hold that Western worldviews have within the research. Our collaborative team of Indigenous and non-Indigenous researchers, and Indigenous patients, Elders, healthcare providers, and administrators, will conduct a critical participatory, scoping review to identify and examine how storytelling has been used as a method in Indigenous health research. METHODS:Guided by two-eyed seeing, we will use Bassett and McGibbon's adaption of Arksey and O'Malley's scoping review methodology. Relevant articles will be identified through a systematic search of the gray literature, core Indigenous health journals, and online databases including Scopus, MEDLINE, Embase, CINAHL, AgeLine, Academic Search Complete, Bibliography of Native North Americans, Canadian Reference Centre, and PsycINFO. Qualitative and mixed-methods research articles will be included if the researchers involved Indigenous participants or their healthcare professionals living in Turtle Island (i.e., Canada and the USA), Australia, or Aotearoa (New Zealand); use storytelling as a research method; focus on healthcare phenomena; and are written in English. Two reviewers will independently screen titles/abstracts and full-text articles. We will extract data, identify the array of storytelling approaches, and critically examine how storytelling was valued and used. An intensive collaboration will be woven throughout all review stages as academic researchers co-create this work with Indigenous patients, Elders, healthcare professionals, and administrators. Participatory strategies will include four relational gatherings throughout the project. Based on our findings, we will co-create a framework to guide the respectful use of storytelling as a method in Indigenous health research involving Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples. DISCUSSION:This work will enable us to elucidate the extent, range, and nature of storytelling within Indigenous health research, to critically reflect on how it has been and could be used, and to develop guidance for the respectful use of this method within research that involves Indigenous peoples and settlers. Our findings will enable the advancement of storytelling methods which meaningfully include Indigenous perspectives, practices, and priorities to benefit the health and wellbeing of Indigenous communities. SYSTEMATIC REVIEW PROTOCOL REGISTRATION:Open Science Framework ( https://osf.io/rvf7q ).
Project description:Background:Mining, agriculture and cattle production are activities that threaten the quality and quantity of water resources in the Colombian Andes. However, many drainage basins in this region have not been subjected to simultaneous evaluation of the impact these activities have on the density, diversity and composition of aquatic macroinvertebrates (AMI). The first two of these ecological variables are expected to decrease drastically from zones with no apparent impact towards areas with anthropogenic activity, which areas with mining will present the most impoverished AMI community. Methods:We evaluated the density, diversity and composition dissimilarity of AMI in streams impacted by gold mining, agriculture and cattle production. Two reference streams were also studied. Six benthic samplings were conducted bimonthly (Feb 2014-Feb 2015) using a Surber net. Water samples were taken in order to make environmental evaluation among the aforementioned streams, including hydrological, physicochemical and bacteriological parameters (HPCB). Diversity was evaluated as the effective number of RTUs-recognizable taxonomic units-by comparing the richness, typical diversity, and effective number of the most abundant RTUs. Compositional dissimilarity was examined with nMDS and CCA analysis. Results:A total of 7,483 organisms were collected: 14 orders, 42 families and 71 RTUs. Our prediction regarding the density and diversity of AMI (Reference > Cattle production > Agriculture > Mining) was partially fulfilled, since the agriculture-dominated stream presented a more impoverished AMI community than that of the gold mining stream. However, these streams presented lower diversity than the cattle production and reference streams, and the AMI density only differed significantly between one reference stream and the agriculture stream. The AMI composition in the agriculture-dominated stream clearly differed from that of the other streams. Discussion:The observation of a more impoverished AMI community in agricultural production areas compared to those with mining or cattle production may reflect the importance of the remaining riparian vegetation, which was scarce at the stream with agricultural activity. Moreover, the low diversity, and mainly the reduced AMI richness, in the agriculture stream coincided with the absence of insect genera are intolerant to deterioration of the biological and physicochemical conditions of the water (e.g. Anacroneuria). Conclusions:The results suggest that the local impact of agricultural activities may be of equal or greater magnitude than that of mining in terms of AMI density, diversity and composition, in the Colombian Andean riverscape. Future studies should systematically evaluate, throughout the annual cycle, the relative effects of the productive land use, the remaining native vegetation cover and the consequent changes in the HPCB parameters of the water on AMI communities in Colombian Andean basins.
Project description:OBJECTIVES:To investigate healthcare professional perceptions of local implementation of a national clinical governance policy in New Zealand. DESIGN:Respondent comments written at the end of a national healthcare professional survey designed to assess implementation of core components of the clinical governance policy. SETTING:The written comments were provided by respondents to a survey distributed to over 41?000 registered healthcare professionals employed in 19 of New Zealand's government-funded District Health Boards. Comments were analysed and categorised within emerging themes. RESULTS:3205 written comments were received. Five key themes illustrating barriers to clinical governance implementation were found, representing problems with: developing management-clinical relations; clinicians stepping up into clinical governance and leadership activities; interprofessional relations; training needs for governance and leadership; and having insufficient time to get involved. CONCLUSIONS:Despite a national policy on clinical governance which New Zealand's government launched in 2009, this study found that considerable effort is required to build clinical governance at the local level. This finding parallels with other studies in the field. Two areas demand attention: building systems for organisational governance and leadership; and building professional governance arrangements.
Project description:Background: Differences in breast cancer outcomes according to race/ethnicity have been reported. Hispanic/Latino (H/L) populations are a genetically admixed and heterogeneous group, with variable fractions of European, Indigenous American and African ancestries. Some studies suggest that breast cancer-specific mortality is higher in U.S. Hispanic/Latinas compared to non-Hispanic Whites (NHW) even after adjustment for socioeconomic status and education. The molecular profile of breast cancer has been widely described in NHWs but equivalent knowledge is lacking in Hispanic/Latinas. We have previously reported that the most prevalent breast cancer intrinsic subtype in Colombian H/L women was Luminal B as defined by surrogate St. Gallen 2013 criteria. In this study we explored ancestry-associated differences in molecular profiles of Luminal B tumors among these highly admixed women. Methods: We performed whole-transcriptome RNA-seq analysis in 42 Luminal tumors (21 Luminal A and 21 Luminal B) from Colombian women. Genetic ancestry was estimated from a panel of 80 ancestry-informative markers (AIM). We categorized patients according to Luminal subtype and to the proportion of European and Indigenous American ancestry and performed differential expression analysis comparing Luminal B against Luminal A tumors according to the assigned ancestry groups. Results: We found 5 genes potentially modulated by genetic ancestry: ERBB2 (Fold Change = 2.367, padj < 0.01), GRB7 (Fold Change = 2.327, padj < 0.01), GSDMB (Fold Change = 1.723, padj < 0.01, MIEN1 (Fold Change = 2.195, padj < 0.01 and ONECUT2 (Fold Change = 2.204, padj < 0.01). In the replication set we found a statistical significant association between European ancestry fraction and the expression levels of ERBB2 (p = 0.02, B = 2.49) and ONECUT2 (p = 0.04, B = -4.87). We also observed statistical significant associations for ERBB2 expression with Indigenous American ancestry (p < 0.001, B = 3.82). This association was not biased by the distribution of HER2+ tumors among the groups analyzed. Conclusions: Our results suggest that genetic ancestry in Hispanic/Latina women might modify ERBB2 gene expression in Luminal tumors. Further analyses are needed to confirm these findings and explore their prognostic value. Overall design: RNA profile of 42 luminal breast cancer tumors (21 luminal A and 21 luminal B) from Colombian patients
Project description:Health professionals are striving to improve respectful care for women, but they fall short in the domains of effective communication, respectful and dignified care and emotional support during labour. This study aimed to determine women's experiences of childbirth with a view to improving respectful clinical care practices in low-risk, midwife-led obstetric units in the Tshwane District Health District, South Africa.A survey covering all midwife-led units in the district was conducted among 653 new mothers. An anonymous questionnaire was administered to mothers returning for a three-days-to-six-weeks postnatal follow-up visit. Mothers were asked about their experiences regarding communication, labour, clinical care and respectful care during confinement. An ANCOVA was performed to identify the socio-demographic variables that significantly predicted disrespectful care. Six items representing the different areas of experience were used in the analysis.Age, language, educational level and length of residence in the district were significantly associated with disrespectful care (p ? 0.01). Overall, the following groups of mothers reported more negative care experiences during labour: women between the ages of 17 and 24 years; women with limited formal education; and women from another province or a neighbouring country. Items which attracted fewer positive responses from participants were the following: 46% of mothers had been welcomed by name on arrival; 47% had been asked to give consent to a physical examination; and 39% had been offered food or water during labour. With regard to items related to respectful care, 54% of mothers indicated that all staff members had spoken courteously to them, 48% said they had been treated with a lot of respect, and 55% were completely satisfied with their treatment.There is a need to improve respectful care through interventions that are integrated into routine care practices in labour wards. To stop the spiral of abusive obstetric care, the care provided should be culturally sensitive and should address equity for the most vulnerable and underserved groups. All levels of the health care system should employ respectful obstetric care practices, matched with support for midwives and improved clinical governance in maternity facilities.
Project description:In this commentary, we argue that Indigenous patients in the Northwest Territories (NWT) have a right to access traditional medicine and related practitioners as a part of the continuum of medical care. Indigenous people make up over half of the NWT population, spread over vast geographic areas with representation from First Nations, Inuit and Métis (FNIM) people. Ensuring barrier-free access to traditional medicine and providers in a culturally respectful environment is a challenge that requires structural transformation in the territorial health system. The ongoing transmission of knowledge about Indigenous traditional medicine in Northern Canada and the collective survival of Northern peoples is a testament to the applicability of traditional medicines in a self-determined wellness system. Through a discussion of the barriers to policy development and implementation, this commentary aims to elevate Indigenous perspectives and offer recommendations for integrating traditional medicines into Northern health systems.