About the Co-op

A meeting in Dawson City in the fall of 1994 brought together interested parties to start an ecological monitoring program for the Northern Yukon.

Participants identified the three main issues that should be the focus of ecological monitoring: climate change, contaminants and regional development.

Participants also decided that an important part of the program should be to bring together science and local and traditional knowledge.

Communities and scientists committed to working on this together. The Arctic Borderlands Ecological Knowledge Co-op grew from that meeting.


  1. To monitor and assess ecosystem changes in the range of the Porcupine Caribou Herd and adjacent coastal and marine areas;
  2. To encourage use of both science-based studies and studies based on local and traditional knowledge in ecological monitoring and ecosystem management;
  3. To improve communications and understanding among governments, aboriginal and non-aboriginal communities and scientists with regard to ecosystem knowledge and management; and
  4. To foster capacity-building and training opportunities in northern communities in the context of the above-listed goals.

Contact information

The Borderlands Co-op is run by a non-profit society. Decisions on Co-op programs are made by participants at annual gatherings. A board of directors is elected annually. Funding and support come from Canadian, territorial and U.S. government agencies, co-management boards, and Inuvialuit and First Nation councils. Additional project funding is currently from Indian and Northern Affairs Canada, and the University of Alaska. Environment Canada provides in-kind support for overall program coordination.

Directors (2005-2006): Randall Tetlichi (Old Crow) - President; Joanne Ahlfs (Fairbanks) - Vice-President; Sheila Nasogaluak (Inuvik) - Secretary-Treasurer; Ian McDonald (Inuvik); William Teya (Fort McPherson); Barney Smith (Whitehorse); Gary Kofinas (Fairbanks); Kenneth Frank (Arctic Village); Robert Charlie (Inuvik)

Gatherings: Whitehorse (1996 & 1997), Inuvik (1998 & 1999), Old Crow (2000), Aklavik (2001), Fort McPherson (2002), Whitehorse (2003), Inuvik (2004), Old Crow (2006)