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Dwyer, A. (2017). Climate Change and Adaptation on Karajarri Country and ‘Pukarrikarra’ Places. Nulungu Research Papers, 1.
I am a Karajarri woman and one of the Traditional Owners of Karajarri Country. I come from Bidyadanga Aboriginal Community which is on Karajarri Country, approximately 190 km south of the township of Broome in the Kimberley region of Western Australia. I am a linguist, interpreter and researcher at the Nulungu Research Institute, located on the Broome campus of the University of Notre Dame Australia, on Yawuru Country. I am often required to bring together traditional knowledge and Western rationalist approaches to knowledge generation in my research endeavours. The aim of the project described in this paper was to explore people’s concerns around climate change on Karajarri Country. It reflects on my cultural background, knowledge, traditional language and beliefs concerning changes to Country caused by changing climate. It also includes the ways my people adapt to changes to Country. During the research, Karajarri People talked about the importance of culture and heritage, and the importance of protecting Karajarri ‘Pukarrikarra’ (dreaming) places from changes to the land and waters. The importance and connectedness of language to Country is highlighted, and the significance and value of Country is demonstrated through our spiritual understandings and cultural practices, especially around climate change on Karajarri Country.
Climate change, Environment, Karajarri, Bidyadanga, Kimberley Western Australia, auto-ethnographic methods