During the first years of this century the Great Lakes states and provinces undertook the Annex 2001 negotiation process, which focuses on protecting the largest body of fresh water on the globe from excessive exploitation. The binding compact which resulted between the states, in coordination with a parallel voluntary agreement with the Canadian province of Quebec, is an excellent example of cooperation to protect an important environmental and economic resource. This process was marred by the persistent unwillingness to include the American Indian tribes and Canadian First Nations who have sovereign claims to the Great Lakes. This article discusses the process itself, including its flaws, along with the basis for the claims of the first nations and their ultimate resolution. It also explains the legal and policy reasons why ignoring the tribal role in resource protection weakens any system which is created.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/jacqueline_hand/1/