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Inuit Knowledge and Climate Change: Lasalusie Ishulutaq

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23 novembre 2010


Lasalusie Ishulutaq from Pangnirtung shares his views on Climate Change. "The sun is hotter now", he says.  "In recent years, it turned really hot.  When I took my family out, I had never experienced the heat that way.  I've noticed that a lot and it brings me to tears."

Full English Transcript:

I have noticed, while it's happening, as I've grown older. It's the tide now. Back then, when we had a strong current, it used to only be three days where it would rise most. Right now, it lasts a full week reaching the highest tide.

The sun is hotter now. In recent years, it turned really hot. When I took my family out, I had never experienced the heat that way.

I've noticed that a lot and it brings me to tears. When I'm on the other side of Cumberland Sound, there used to be a glacier there, and the now the land is all gray. It used to be white with glaciers. Glaciers are melting. All over, in the places we hunt during summer, there's no more glaciers. At one time, there was a place where a polar bear was caught in a den, but now the snow there is now gone and it's all clean.

This I've noticed. Way back then, around 1960, when I was a young man, our environment started to change. We usually have a cold north wind, but we haven't had that for a long time, and it became warmer even in the dead of winter. Right now, the north wind is more-and-more out of place, as it seems to be coming from the west. That's how it is.

Way back then, when I was a young man, the ice would stay for a long time. In the spring, they're hunting on the ice, catching seal pups. That's how it was. They would hunt on the ice until the end of June. In the early 70s, the ice started to break up early, and it got earlier and earlier. This was happening. It was quite scary. We were still out there in the middle of winter, in the month of December. For two years, the ice broke up in December, and there were huge waves. It was noticeable. The ice would break up. And today, I notice where there used to be no open water, it exists now. You know what this is? Open spots in the ice that never existed before? Being a hunter, being out there, you really notice this. We are always cautious when we're out there. Today, we sometimes have to alter our hunting travel routes on the ice because of this. I notice the ice is melting.


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