Eriel Tchekwie Deranger is a Denè Indigenous rights advocate, activist and member of the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation (ACFN) of Northern Alberta, Canada, downstream of Alberta’s Tar Sands.
Eriel is the Executive Director of Indigenous Climate Action, Canada’s only Indigenous-led climate justice organization.
ICA support Indigenous peoples as agents of change and leaders to building a climate stable future.
Eriel has worked with and for her First Nation community and has held positions with the Rainforest Action Network (RAN), Sierra Club Canada, TakingItGlobal, the United Nations Indigenous Youth Caucus, and various youth projects. She also is active board members with Bioneers and the UK Tar Sands Network. Her work pushes forward the demands that all levels of government and the private sector need to act now to fully recognize and implement the unique Indigenous rights her people hold as described by Treaty and the United Nation Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
Eriel has and continues to work alongside various Indigenous and environmental organizations at provincial, national and international levels using to create greater awareness about the negative impacts to the rights of Indigenous peoples caused by climate change and fossil fuel extraction, drawing on her home communities plight challenging Alberta’s Tar Sands.
She has traveled the world delivering workshops, keynote address and lectures that empower and inspire people to understand, support and uphold the unique rights of Indigenous peoples. Her incredible work has been recognized through various awards she has received that honor her contributions to Indigenous rights in Canada and beyond.
Her extensive experience and a deep-rooted understanding of international Indigenous rights was obtained through her direct work with her own and other Indigenous communities and supplemented through the International Training Centre for Indigenous People in Illulissat, Greenland. She also gained invaluable knowledge and understand during her time as a Treaty Land Entitlement and Specific Land Claims Researcher with the Federation of Saskatchewan Indian Nations.
Eriel’s comes from a family of activists who have been fighting all manner of industrial development on traditional First Nations and Treaty lands. She is now married and a mother of two, raising her children to be proud of their heritage and where they are from.
Eriel appears in ELEMENTAL, the award-winning documentary film about three ecojustice activists (including Rajendra Singh of India and Jay Harman of Australia).
Eriel’s commentary has been published in the Guardian, the National Observer, and Red Pepper Magazine.
Eriel can give the following workshops:
How to be an ally: Indigenous Peoples in the Environmental Movement
Decolonization and the climate justice movement
Tar Sands 101: Oil and Indigenous Rights
Introduction into Non-Violent Direct Action
Understanding Indigenous Rights and Climate Justice
Eco-Feminism and Indigenous Rights
Indigeniety: Reclaiming our places and spaces in Modern Society