Birch bark texture.

Ahtna Kanas Winter 2023

Land Management Plan Updates Kick Off

In preparation for the Trans-Alaska Pipeline System (TAPS) construction, Ahtna prepared The Ahtna Region – Background for Regional and Community Planning document in 1973. The 1973 Plan was intended to assist local tribes, Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA) Village Corporations and Ahtna, Inc. with regional growth plans. In 2014, the Land Department completed a revised version of the 1973 Plan, emphasizing customary and traditional uses across the landscape and, specifically, the Ahtna land ownership.

The 2014 Comprehensive Land and Resource Management Plan included and identified resource allocations such as forestry, minerals, tourism, recreation, and future village development, to name a few. However, the 2014 Plan did not include forest carbon sequestration, contaminated lands, cultural sites, or environmental factors such as climate change in much detail.

A full review of the 2014 Plan kicked off in October, 2022. Meetings were held with villages to identify specific areas to be considered for future development such as housing, clinics, recreation centers, and fire and rescue buildings. The revised plan will also emphasize protection of the entire ecosystem – from the tops of mountains to the river estuaries, and everything in between – including the plants, wildlife and human inhabitants.

As former Ahtna, Inc. President Robert Marshall declared in the 1973 Plan introduction, “This report (plan) was prepared with your input, and it is my hope that it will guide you and other residents of the region in developing the next phase, which will be directed to the development of regional and village growth plans and to the regulations needed to insure the full protection of the land.”