Lands protection of the Department of Culture and Lands Protection has a number of ongoing monitoring activities:
The Tłįchǫ Aquatic Ecosystem Monitoring Project started in August 2010, as a collaboration between the Tłįchǫ Government, the Wek’ èezhı̀i Land and Water Board, and the Wek’ èezhı̀i Renewable Resource Board. Tłįchǫ community participants and scientists are collecting baseline information on fish, fish habitat, and water quality to compare any changes that may occur in the future, and develop a way to monitor fish that builds on both traditional Tłįchǫ Knowledge and science. There have been a series of camps each year in different areas of the region: 2010 – Marian Lake Fish Camp; 2011 – Russell Lake Fish Camp; 2012 – Snare Lake Fish Camp 2013 – Gamètì Fish Camp; 2014 – Whatì Fish Camp
The Marian Watershed Monitoring Program is a community-based Aquatic Effects Monitoring Program (AEMP) with specific consideration of the future impacts of the licensed NICO Project and other possible, future developments in the region. The program will monitor fish, water, and sediment prior to operation of the proposed NICO mine and will continue data collection in the future in order to monitor cumulative effects of development, land disturbance, and climate change in the Marian Watershed. Both western and Aboriginal science will be drawn on to obtain a clear picture of baseline conditions and potential changes over time. Results will contribute to characterization of background conditions and the range of natural variability in water chemistry in the Marian River, which is crucial to implementation of the legal requirement for water on Tłįchǫ lands to remain substantially unaltered (per Tłįchǫ Agreement and EA0809-004 EA Measures).
The program attempts to answer two key community-based questions: Is the fish safe to eat and the water safe to drink? The main objective of this program is to answer these questions in a meaningful way and facilitate communication of the answers from community members to community members.
Caribou Monitoring Winter Training Camps have occurred during the 2011 and 2013 winter. Tłįchǫ Citizens and TG Staff were trained in the field to collect caribou samples, which was led by the GNWT Dept. of Environment and Natural Resources and our lands Protection staff. While attending the field training; community members had hands on training and experienced staff were on hand to answer any questions or comments as to why selected caribou parts are sampled. This was an opportunity for Tłįchǫ Citizens to further their knowledge of the studies being done on the Caribou herds.
The Environmental Monitoring Training Program is a 3 day training program that rotates within the 4 Tłįchǫ Communities. Selected community members are taught to read topographic maps, data collection, GPS, wildlife observations, and field practices. When participants complete the program, they are given an opportunity to participate in the Marian Watershed Programs. In 2013 , the training was held in Behchokǫ̀/Whatì and there were 8 Graduates. In 2014 , the training was held in Gamètì /Wekweètì and there were 6 Graduates.