Managing natural assets is never a one-and-done solution. It is a continuously adapting process as new data, priorities, and realities of the landscape affect the needs of communities. In much the same way, reconciliation between settler and First Nations, Métis, and Inuit governments requires ongoing attention and investment.
Looking ahead and recognizing our role in upholding UNDRIP and strengthening NAM, learnings from this project will be reflected and improved through MNAI’s initiatives, including an initiative in BC that seeks to develop similar inventories in that province.
In terms of the inventory development itself, it was clear that the CLI was vital in Manitoba to advancing natural asset management (NAM) due to its inclusion of both Indigenous and non-Indigenous partners, its regional scope and, ultimately, that the initiative exists specifically to tackle complex issues surrounding the context of reconciliation. There could be many future synergies between NAM and CLI.
If both NAM and reconciliation are to progress at the pace of climate change, partners must reject the “traditional” in exchange for collaboration, respect, and commitment to a shared future. Systemic-level change demands progressive action. As the CIER says, “the status quo isn’t good enough”.