Housing in Indigenous Communities
Indigenous practices make housing sustainable in Alaska
North America’s first nations have long been experts at building homes that can adapt to changing climates. Native Americans were the first green architects and builders of the Americas and traditional Native American building designs and practices are sustainable and are experts in adaptation.
One example: “The northern animal doesn’t eat more in the winter to stay warm,” says Aaron Cooke, an architect at CCHRC-NREL. “They grow thicker fur or blubber.” The insulation techniques from 10,000 years of tribal practice and were perfected in CCHRC’s labs to create sustainable housing for Indigenous people in Alaska.
It is time we work with Indigenous communities to create sustainable, healthy homes based on thousands of years of cultural and land knowledge.