BC’s Fraser Valley Canyon is home to the Kanaka Bar Indian Band. For countless generations, their ancestors sustained themselves with an abundance of salmon from a river that fed them long before its namesake, Simon Fraser, came to explore this region. Located a half hour drive from the town of Lytton, the official ‘hottest place in Canada’, today the community of Kanaka Bar lives with a range of increasing threats brought about by our warming climate. With summertime highs now regularly above 40°C, a warming Fraser River is already impairing the annual salmon runs that feed this community’s traditional food supply. Hotter, drier summers place added pressure on their fresh water resources and increase an already historically high risk for forest fires. For the current and future leaders of Kanaka Bar, adapting to climate change is no longer an option so this Nation is embarking on a range of clean energy and sustainability initiatives designed to mitigate the effects of climate change. Led by Chief Patrick Michell, Kanaka Bar Band is underway with an aggressive plan to ensure their food, water, resource, and energy independence.
During the hottest days of summer, host Melina Laboucan-Massimo visits Kanaka Bar where she meets youth and leadership working side by side to sustain their community in a future shaped by climate change. At the Prairie Climate Center in Winnipeg, Melina meets some of Canada’s leading climate scientists who share a dire forecast about our warming climate and its longer term effects on our Nation.