One of the reasons Defenders was created was to address the destruction of the environment within the Treaty territory. The tribal governments are limited by American law to their reservation (POW camp) boundaries. Defenders is not. As a non-profit environmental organization operating under American law, we are able to help address more issues and help the tribes as well. We are like a megaphone for the tribes.
Secondly, the Teton Sioux Nation Treaty Council represents a nation, not an organization. The good work of Tony Black Feather and Garfield Grass Rope at the United Nations also spawned the idea that when we get the Treaty territory back, either through paperwork, or through the work of the spirits (natural forces), then the environment needs to be as healthy as possible, “hecel lena oyate kinipikte,” so the people can live. Therefore, Defenders has always worked hand in hand with the Treaty Council. The Treaty Council was not created by American law and operates for the survival of a nation, the Great Sioux Nation.