Dear colleagues, indigenous sisters and brothers,
As you may know, in early August Aborigen-Forum, an alliance of experts, leaders, and organizations of indigenous peoples of the North, Siberia and the Far East of Russia, appealed to Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla, Inc.
Forum members are calling upon Tesla to boycott any products made by Nornickel – a Russian nickel and palladium mining and smelting company and one of the primary polluters in the Russian Arctic – until it fulfills several important demands to protect indigenous peoples’ rights (see details here – https://indigenous-russia.com/archives/5785).
Here is where you come in – we need your help to gain Elon Musk’s attention! Last week, we launched the #AnswerUsElonMusk public campaign. We are asking you and other indigenous activists, community leaders, IP rights defenders, environmentalists, researchers, and anyone concerned about environmental pollution and seeking to protect indigenous rights to support us.
We respectfully ask you and your organizations’ members and supporters to join this public campaign. You can raise awareness on social media using simple hashtags – #AnswerUsElonMusk; #NoNickelFromNornickel; #DefendIndigenousArctic. Post a selfie with these hashtags or add your own hashtags and post images or video on your social networks. (see details here – https://indigenous-russia.com/archives/6719)
The Nornickel company is one of the world’s leaders in environmental contamination. It operates in the fragile Arctic, a region that is particularly vulnerable to the lasting impacts of pollution. This company is also responsible for the huge oil spill that occurred on May 29, 2020, when one of Nornickel’s power plants flooded local rivers with 21,000 tons of diesel oil. This accident has often been compared in scale to the disastrous 1989 Exxon Valdez spill.
We demand justice, and we view this campaign as a collective human rights action with the potential to ally with indigenous communities worldwide around struggles with extractive industries polluting traditional indigenous lands.
Let’s join together in solidarity! We all live on the same planet – Earth. The industrial revolution in countries – even though it is sometimes a green revolution – should not come once again at the cost of unsustainable resource exploitation, destruction of nature, and violation of indigenous peoples’ rights. We must come together to create our common future together.
Please share this appeal widely in your networks and partner organizations, requesting support for the #AnswerUsElonMusk campaign. Please share links to your publication with us at firstname.lastname@example.org or join and share pictures and videos in our Facebook group https://www.facebook.com/groups/AnswerUsElonMusk.
- Gennady Schukin, Executive Secretary, Aborigen Forum (Russia)
- Andrey Danilov, Director, Sami Heritage and Development Foundation (Russia)
- Pavel Sulyandziga, Chair, International Indigenous Fund for Development and Solidarity «Batani» (US)
- Dmitry Berezhkov, Director, Arctic Consult (Norway)