Climate Change

Climate Change Council

The NWT Climate Change Council is a forum for the sharing of information, for collaboration, and for engagement between non-elected staff of Indigenous governments and Indigenous organizations, representatives of NWT communities and the GNWT, with input from external partners. The Council provides guidance and advice to inform and advance GNWT climate change and environment programs in alignment with IGO and community perspectives, interests, and knowledge. Further, the Council provides an opportunity to build on and strengthen relationships, shared understandings, and trust, which supports the GNWT’s commitment to move towards implementation of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP). They will work with advisory panels and groups including Elders, youth, and stakeholders to find shared solutions to the challenges and opportunities we face. The NWT Climate Change Council will also gather input from the Climate Change Advisory Group that includes environmental non-government organizations, industry, co-management organizations and academia.  
The Council will help inform the development, implementation and review of the following GNWT programs, agreements, strategies, and action plans such as the:
  • 2030 NWT Climate Change Strategic Framework, 2019-2023 Action Plan, and future action plans
  • 2030 NWT Energy Strategy and Action Plan
  • NWT Water Stewardship Strategy and action plans
  • Transboundary Water Management Agreements
  • NWT Cumulative Impact Monitoring Program
  • Sustainable Livelihoods Action Plan 2019-2023

NWT Climate Change Council – Membership list

Organization[1]   Members and Alternates
Acho Dene Koe First Nation Appointed: Meghan Buckham
Alternate: Mark McDougall
Akaitcho Dene First Nations No members designated
Dehcho First Nations Appointed: Michael Low
Alternate: Melanie Simba
Délı̨nę Got’ı̨nę Government Appointed: Gina Bayha
Alternate: David Little
Gwich'in Tribal Council Appointed: Leigh-Ann Williams Jones
Alternate: Kanda Gnama
Inuvialuit Regional Corporation Appointed: Shanay Williams
Alternate: N/A
Kátł’odeeche First Nation Appointed: Patrick Riley
Alternate: Debbie Miller
North Slave Métis Alliance Appointed: Jessica Smart
Alternate: Noah Johnson
Northwest Territory Métis Nation Appointed: Lorne Napier
Sahtu Secretariat Inc.

Appointed: Orlena Modeste
Alternate: Dakota Erutse

Salt River First Nation Appointed: Alexander (Donny) Beaulieu
Alternate: Kendra Bourque
Tłı̨chǫ Government Appointed: Phoebe Rabesca
Alternate: N/A
Northwest Territories Association of Communities Appointed: Sara Brown
Alternate: N/A
Department of Environment and Natural Resources Appointed: Julian Kanigan, (Co-Chair) [2]
Alternate: Cory Doll (A/Co-Chair)
Department of Infrastructure Appointed: Rob Marshall
Alternate: N/A
[1] Nahanni Butte Dene Band (NBDB) expressed interest in participating on the NWT Climate Change Council. NBDB is invited as an observer until a decision is taken at the next council meeting.
[2] Note that due to a recent vacancy, an Indigenous government or Indigenous organization co-chair will be chosen at the next Council meeting.

NWT Climate Change Council Priorities

  • The NWT Climate Change Council has identified its initial areas of focus including mitigation, community adaptation planning, impacts on the environment, impacts on people, and information sharing and outreach.
  • Informed by the areas of focus, initial meetings aimed at building a shared understanding of climate change impacts and initiatives have taken place in the NWT.
  • Key objectives of the Council require members to share the perspectives and interests of their organizations; share useful information, including Indigenous or scientific knowledge; and identify opportunities, concerns and emerging issues and seek solutions.
  • Informing GNWT priorities and informing and building alignment of priorities with Indigenous governments and Indigenous organizations is also a key part of a Council member’s role.
  • Scheduled and potential agenda items for the next several Council meetings include:
    • Engaging on the NWT (Adaptation) Risk and Opportunities Plan: Building a shared understanding of NWT climate priorities.
    • Gaining Council perspectives on NWT input to the National Adaptation Strategy.
    • Exploring the case for regional adaptation positions.
    • Input into the 2022-2025 Energy Action Plan.
    • Initiating the Youth Advisory Group.
    • Informing:
      • An NWT Climate Change Outreach Plan
      • Climate Monitoring and Climate Impact Monitoring Plans
      • Climate change research priorities
      • Climate Information Library
      • Forest landscape vulnerability
      • Climate Change Strategic Framework Evaluation