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First Carbon Credit Corporation The Story of the Turtle

The Story of the Turtle

The prominence of the turtle in First Carbon Credits Corporation’s logo reflects the significance of the turtle both in aboriginal folklore (with North America being referred to as Turtle Island) and in the environment.

Robert Coulter, Chief Operating Officer and co-founder of FCCC, is an aboriginal person that uses his traditional knowledge of the land in the design and promotion of the varied opportunities surrounding the science of biological sequestration and the development of offset emissions projects.

Many American Indian early histories tell of events that took place on this Turtle continent (North America) long before any so-called ice age. In the creation story, the earth began to grow after the muskrat brought mud from the bottom of the sea and placed it on the back of the turtle. Life was created from the earth. The earth is a representation of what we refer to as the world and the turtle has the earth on its back. The turtle has all the responsibility of the shifting of the earth and the cycles of the moon. The Turtle Clan responsibility is looking after our environment.  The Turtle Clan is one of the principal clans of the Mohawks. Turtle symbolizes our entire Earth, and therefore is associated with respect of the Earth and Earth Elements.

Onondaga: The Earth on Turtle's Back

Before the Earth existed, there was only water. In the Clouds was Skyland, where a sacred Great Tree grew. The Great Tree had branches that pointed to the four cardinal directions (North, South, East, and West).

An ancient chief lived in Skyland. His wife was with child and she had a dream that the Great Tree was uprooted. Dreams were very important to the Ancient Chief. The chief and his men tried to pull the tree loose, but the taproot was very deep.

Finally, the Ancient Chief, using all his energy, managed to loosen the soil from around the tree. It was uprooted and laid upon its side. However, the tree left a large hole in Skyland. The chief's wife looked down the hole and saw something glittering like water. She steadied herself on the branches of the Great Tree. However, the branch snapped and broke and she fell down endlessly.

Two Swans saw this women and flew up to help her so as to cushion her fall. They then realized that the woman was not like them...she did not have webbed feet or waterproof feathers. This creature could not live in the water. All the animals decided that she would die if they did not think of a plan to save her.
After much discussion, they decide that she was made to live on Earth. However, the only Earth was at the bottom of the continuous oceans and streams. The Duck, the Beaver, and the Loon all tried to bring Earth from the bottom to the top of the water. They all failed. Then the Muskrat, decided to try. He took on a determined look and went up and down, until finally he loosened some Earth. However, they knew Earth did not float on water, so Turtle volunteered to carry Earth on his back. Muskrat put Earth on Turtle's back, but her paw marks still remain to this day.

After Earth reached Turtle's back, it began to increase in size until it became what we today call Turtle Island (North America). The Swans flew down carrying Sky Woman to her new home. Sky Woman relaxed and opened her hand (that held those leaves and seeds from the Great Tree). The seeds fell to Earth, germinated and many new trees grew on Turtle Island.

Life on Earth had begun. Today Mother Earth provides us with food, air, water, and shelter. Turtle with the Great Tree on his back is the symbol of the Iroquois Nation.

(Caduto, Michael J.and Joseph Bruchac, Keepers of the Earth. Golden, CO.: Fulcrum, Inc., 1989)