ENVIRONMENTAL DECLARATION OF JEANNE SHENANDOAH
The Creator has given us a great duty to take care of, or be stewards of, Mother Earth and the air, water and all plants and animals.
It is the knowledge of our people that all living things have a spirit. In our culture, we are taught to give thanks daily to the Creator for all forms of plants and animals; we do not consider that humans have superior rights to these other life forms. We are taught that we must all share the gifts of the Creator. One of the responsibilities of our leaders is to preserve the natural world for those yet to be born.
Historically, it is important to remember that the Onondaga Nation’s aboriginal territory, which we enjoyed up until the incursion of the Europeans about 400 years ago, was an area of land approximately 40 to 50 miles wide that began on the St. Lawrence River and Lake Ontario in the north and ran down well into Pennsylvania to the south. Our aboriginal territory was bordered on the east by the territory of the Oneida Nation and on the west by the territory of the Cayuga Nation.