Climate Change and Ethnobiology
Session Organizer: James Veteto
Ninety-seven percent of the world’s climate scientists agree that anthropogenic climate change is an increasing world phenomenon and concern. A growing consensus among local and indigenous people confirms recognizable changes in climate patterns in diverse localities across the globe. Anthropologists and ethnobiologists with long-term ethnographic fieldwork programs have increasingly been hearing the narratives of the people they work with engage with climate change themes. Plants and animals are migrating as whole ecoregions are undergoing temperature regime reclassification, the world’s glaciers are melting, and coastlines are being engulfed in sea level rise. Environmental refugees are increasing exponentially each year. The engagement between climate change and ethnobiology is not only upon us, but appears poised to be the most important research domain in the field moving forward. Several topics deserve immediate attention by ethnobiologists working on climate change issues and will be addressed in this panel: the dialectic between climate change and Traditional Environmental Knowledge in diverse locales; the relationship between agriculture, agrobiodiversity, and climate change; ethnobotany and the migration of species, the relationship between conservation knowledge regimes and climate change, and biocultural diversity and the political ecology of climate change perception.