Climate change in arid lands and Native American socioeconomic vulnerability: The case of the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe

Mahesh R. Gautam, Karletta Chief, William J. Smith

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Abstract

The case of the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe exemplifies tribal vulnerabilities as a result of climate change. Preliminary socio-economic data and analysis reveal that the tribe's vulnerability to climate change is related to cultural and economic dependence on Pyramid Lake, while external socio-economic vulnerability factors influence adaptive capacity and amplify potential impacts. Reduced water supplies as a consequence of climate change would result in a compounded reduction of inflows to Pyramid Lake, thus potentially impacting the spawning and sustenance of a cultural livelihood, the endangered cui-ui fish (Chasmistes cujus). Meanwhile, limited economic opportunities and dwindling federal support constrain tribal adaptive capacity. Factors that contribute to tribal adaptive capacity include: sustainability-based values, technical capacity for natural resource management, proactive initiatives for the control of invasive-species, strong external scientific networks, and remarkable tribal awareness of climate change.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationClimate Change and Indigenous Peoples in the United States
Subtitle of host publicationImpacts, Experiences and Actions
PublisherSpringer International Publishing
Pages77-91
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)9783319052663
ISBN (Print)3319052659, 9783319052656
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)

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    Gautam, M. R., Chief, K., & Smith, W. J. (2014). Climate change in arid lands and Native American socioeconomic vulnerability: The case of the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe. In Climate Change and Indigenous Peoples in the United States: Impacts, Experiences and Actions (pp. 77-91). Springer International Publishing. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-05266-3_7