Isle de Jean Charles

Tegan Wendland / WWNO

Native American tribes in Louisiana and Alaska are asking the United Nations for help. Tribal leaders say climate change is destroying their communities and forcing them to relocate.

Rising seas and bigger storms are threatening tribal communities all across the country. In Louisiana, several tribes live in areas along the coast that are washing away fast, due to coastal erosion, sea level rise and the erosion of canals carved by oil and gas companies.

A year ago this month, Karl Lengel sat down with author Elizabeth Rush to discuss her book Rising: Dispatches From the New American Shore, described as "a highly original work of lyric reportage and a haunting meditation on how to let go of the places we love". She chronicled several American communities that have been changed by rising waters, including Staten Island, as affected by Hurricane Sandy and the Isle de Jean Charles in Louisiana. Rising: Dispatches From the New American Shore was named a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize.

Tegan Wendland / WWNO

This week on the coastal news roundup - an update on Isle de Jean Charles.  It was big news in 2016 when the state was awarded $48 million to relocate people from the disappearing island. But the process has not been smooth; permanent relocation hasn’t happened yet, and a Native American tribe blames that on the state.

WWNO’s Tegan Wendland talked with Chantel Comeradelle, tribal secretary of Isle de Jean Charles band of the Biloxi-Chitimacha-Choctaw.