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Understanding Arctic Co-Management: The U.S. Marine Mammal Approach

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Co-management is an effective tool through which Alaska Native communities can pursue self-governance and self-determination in regards to marine mammal resources. In the Arctic, co-management typically aims to promote environmental conservation, sustainable resource use, and equitable sharing of resource-related benefits and responsibilities. This paper traces a variety of co-management regimes and other international management frameworks, and posits that co-management of subsistence resources is not just a legal issue or a governance issue, but rather, it is an issue of human rights and environmental justice. It concludes that co-management regimes are most successful when they integrate frameworks for shared responsibility, and build long-term relationships on mutual trust and strong legal agreements.

Affiliations: 1: Ocean Program, Environmental Law Institute and Academic Coordinator & Lecturer, Scripps Institution of Oceanography ; 2: Environmental Law Institute ; 3: Chesapeake Legal Alliance and Visiting Attorney, Environmental Law Institute


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