For the last few years there has been a great deal of discussion surrounding Canada’s arctic sovereignty. The current Conservative government has been very interested in establishing Canada’s command of the Northwest passage. The original quest for the Northwest Passage was fraught with death and disaster. Modern technology and changing global conditions has changed the situation. As the ice becomes more navigable, shipping and tourism through the Arctic sea is more attractive. Already Canada has been faced with competing interests from Russia, the United States, and others. The government pays people to live in Arctic regions, in part to keep a presence in that area. This issue has been on my mind for awhile, and I’d like to recommend the following CBC documentary as an interesting look at one such Northern community. This one was created by a previous Canadian government precisely to reinforce Arctic sovereignty.
There has also been talk of adding an additional “to sea” to the Canada motto of “from sea to sea.” This change would acknowledge that Canada is surrounded by three bodies of water and not just two. The original motto came about at a time when the country was interested in expanding westward to the Pacific ocean, and the Arctic region was an afterthought. Apparently the change would be relatively cheap, and is supported by many elected officials. It is a minor detail in a sea of much more important issues, but it is also a simple way to acknowledge the breadth of our nation and its peoples.