New Era, Similar Results
Sadly, just as energy tribes secured recognition of their sovereign rights to control resource development, the market for Indian energy collapsed. This Epilogue explains the changes in international energy markets that produced a glut of cheap foreign oil in mid-1980s, making investment in tribal-led energy projects uneconomical. It also updates readers on the fitful attempts by the Northern Cheyenne, Crow, and Navajo to establish mineral revenues amid fluctuating energy markets, and details the intense intra-tribal debates over resource development that continue to divide these communities. Despite these setbacks, however, the book concludes on a hopeful note, describing subsequent changes to federal law that continue to expand tribal control over reservation resources. The last anecdote offers CERT Chairman Peter MacDonald’s 1982 farewell address as an opportunity to summarize the energy tribes’ momentous efforts. These groups mobilized a defense of the homeland, developed the institutional capacity to regulate energy development, and secured legal authority over reservation resources. Only the successful execution of that authority to alleviate suffocating poverty remains.
Keywords: Ed Gabriel, David Lester, Council of Energy Resource Tribes, Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, Crow tribe, Navajo tribe, Northern Cheyenne Tribe, Peter MacDonald, Wilfred Scott, tribal energy resource agreement
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