The Mni Wizipan Wakan Project presents a unique opportunity to build on the momentum generated by the show of solidarity and unity in support of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe’s sovereign right to protect the Missouri River and sacred sites from destruction by the Dakota Access Pipeline.
The Missouri River Basin is a threatened bioregion due to unmitigated abuse by extractive fossil fuel industries, aided and abetted by federal and local government policies and actions which deny sovereign and inherent Native rights to manage land and water resources.
The strategy of this project is to empower tribal governments and grassroots Native communities of the Oceti Sakowin (Great Sioux Nation) to restore traditional Native practices of water and land management. They will create a unique database of geographic, social, and natural scientific information and related maps that incorporate Indigenous Wisdom with Western Science.
The project will also work to build popular support for alternatives to fossil energy dependency, oppose the KXL Pipeline and begin to re-indigenize the landscape and water management toward a restoration of the Missouri River Basin as a bioreserve.
The long-term goal of this project is to create both political support and a legal basis for joint tribal-federal government co-management of the landscape and hydroscape in order to mitigate climate change health concerns, food production and energy generation.