Minnesota Native News is a weekly radio segment covering ideas and events relevant to Minnesota’s Native American communities. Made possible by the Minnesota Art's and Cultural Heritage fund
Marie: This week on Minnesota Native News, Ojibwe Tribes take a stand for wild rice and a sculpture takes shape at the Walker Art Center. I’m Marie Rock.
Story #1: In early June, Enbridge Energy applied for a new permit to displace 5 BILLION gallons of water as it makes way for its new pipeline. Laurie Stern reports on the reaction.
LS: The new permit says Enbridge can remove 10 times what the original permit allowed. Tribes say it was rushed through and that it’s unacceptable. This is Alan Roy, secretary-treasure of White Earth Nation.
I'm obligated and the tribal council is obligated to stand up for wild rice by tribal law.
LS: The tribes say pulling water as Enbridge installs new pipe threatens their mahnomen, especially in this year of heat and drought. Delegates to the Minnesota Chippewa Tribe Executive Council meeting last week urged tribal leadership to fight back.
LS: Rennee Keezer is an environmental scientist for White Earth.
RK: That whole water table is dropping. And it's affecting everything because all of our waters are connected. And we are going to see such a dramatic biodiversity loss with all the plants that trees are trees. We're losing our boreal forests because of the climate change. And this is just expediting.
We're losing our fish. Our lakes are drying up and we're losing our rice and the tribes were not properly consulted.
LS: Enbridge and the DNR say the water will go right back into the ground not far from where it’s removed. A DNR spokesperson says the dewatering “will not have any measurable impact on surface waters near the Line 3 construction sites. \
LS AR: And so so Enbridge and the DNR are saying that the measures they're taking, do not threaten wild rice or the lake levels. … my response and the administration's response to her was, well, we have scientists too. And we also have sovereignty. And so we're going to, we're going to work our way through this. And we're just going to keep pressing forward.
Story #2 Marie: A major sculpture by a Dakota artist will celebrate language, land and connection. Laurie Stern reports it will occupy an important place at the Walker sculpture garden.
LS: The installation is called Okcyiapi and will sit in the northwest part of the sculpture garden between the street and the iconic spoon and cherry. That’s the same spot where the infamous Scaffold sculpture stood before it was taken down . This is The Walker’s executive director, Mary Ceruti,
MC: After scaffold was dismantled, and we had many conversations over actually many months with Dakota elders, one of the things that the walker committed to doing was to commission a piece for the sculpture garden.
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