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The political Arctic PowerPoint Presentation
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The political Arctic

The political Arctic

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The political Arctic

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  1. The political Arctic

  2. The Canadian Arctic

  3. Canadian interests in the Arctic Security “nothing comes before that” (Harper) Sovereignty Natural resources – oil, gas, diamonds, gold Environmental management Social issues

  4. Arctic Sovereignty Northwest passage Beaufort Sea Hans Island Continental shelf claims

  5. Northwest Passage • Legal claims • Internal waters by historic title • No one exercised possession once claims made • Belated claim 1973 • Reaction of foreign governments • Inability to control navigation (other uses) • Internal waters included within straight baselines • Stronger claims but … right of ‘innocent passage’

  6. Northwest Passage • The NW Passage route cuts about 5 days off alternative routes between China and Europe/Eastern North America • Oil, gas and other resources would also likely transit through NW Passage to get to eastern US • US and others maintain that the Passage is an international strait allowing for unfettered access • One option for resolving the dispute with the US might be “joint seaway management” – infrastructure and policing

  7. Northwest Passage

  8. Climate Change and the Passage

  9. Climate Change in the Arctic

  10. The Economist on Arctic issues

  11. Arctic sea ice

  12. Beaufort Sea claim

  13. 400 onshore oil and gas fields have been discovered to date in Canada, Russia and US • US geological Survey estimates 90 billion barrels of undiscovered oil and 1,670 trillion cubic feet of natural gas (about 13% of world’s reserves)

  14. Drilling activity in the Beaufort Sea

  15. Continental Shelf Claims UNCLOS ratified in 2003 Canadian government has until 2013 to present its claim to the UN Commission on the Continental Shelf This is not about sovereignty but about rights to exploitation of resources and management regimes

  16. Harper’s Arctic Policy

  17. Five icebreakers, 14 long-range helicopters, radar satellite for tracking ships and mapping sea ice • Lack the capacity to operate year round

  18. 2009 Northern Strategy exercising our Arctic Sovereignty promoting social and economic development protecting our environmental heritage improving and devolving northern governance

  19. Defence Measures I Building six to eight armed Polar Class 5 Arctic Offshore Patrol Ships(AOPS); The establishment of a multi-purpose Arctic training centre in Resolute Bay, Nunavut; The creation of a berthing and refuelling facility at the existing deepwater port of Nanisivik, in Nunavut, to serve as a staging area for naval vessels in the High Arctic and for use by Canadian Coast Guard vessels as well; The establishment of a permanent army reserve unit based in Yellowknife; Expanding the size and capabilities of the Canadian Rangers and the Junior Canadian Rangers Program.

  20. Defence Measures II Plans to enhance the ability of the CF to conduct surveillance through the modernization and replacement of the Aurora patrol aircraft; The Polar Epsilon Project, which will provide space-based surveillance using information from Canada’s RADARSAT-2 satellite to produce imagery for military commanders during the conduct of operations; The use of unmanned aerial vehicle technology;

  21. The budget and the Arctic • Uncertainty around commitment to Arctic research station, and to other Arctic research projects • support for developing some port facilities, but Nanisivik looks questionable • Arctic offshore patrol ships delayed until 2018; cost increase of $40 million • Trying to multi-task, or in this case identify a clear task • spending cuts at the Canadian Space Agency will result in delays or cancellation of satellites for the Arctic.

  22. Arctic Cooperation I Arctic Council (1996) institutionalized cooperation on nonmilitary matters among the eight Arctic countries: Russia, the United States (Alaska), Canada, Denmark (Greenland), Norway, Iceland, Sweden, and Finland

  23. Arctic Cooperation II Ilulissat Declaration (2008) Russia, the United States, Canada, Denmark, and Norway reaffirmed their commitment to working within an existing framework of international law to delimit their respective areas of jurisdiction over the seabed. (UN LOS Treaty) US-Russia notification agreement

  24. Environment and foreign policy Environmental issues have gained increased prominence – compare 1972 Stockholm meeting with 1992 Rio conference Canadian (government and societal) interest and support for environmental issues has been uneven at best Acid rain, Great Lakes, coastal oil spills, and Arctic have been major concerns Ozone protection, Montreal protocol of 1987

  25. Rio Earth Summit 1992 • 172 countries; 108 heads of state • 2400+ representatives of nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) • Numerous conventions and action plans adopted

  26. Rio Conference and Climate Change June 1992 summit strongly supported by Mulroney government Signed and ratified UN Framework Conventions on Climate Change and Biodiversity Kyoto 1997, 3rd Conference of the Parties (CoP) to the UNFCCC agrees on Kyoto Protocol; Chretien took lead; Canada must cut average annual greenhouse gas emissions to six per cent below 1990 levels over the period from 2008-2012; ratified in December 2002

  27. Climate change and Canadian policy Kyoto Protocol ratified in 2002 (as Bush administration was rejecting it) Greenhouse gas emissions increase significantly since signing on to Kyoto Martin government complains about US policy in 2005, but does nothing to change Canadian policy Harper government rhetorically abandons Kyoto in 2006; withdraws officially in December 2011 Harper government ties its emissions policy to US policy at Copenhagen in 2009 and Cancun in 2010

  28. Greenhouse Gas Emissions • Reporting required by UN convention • Principal sources of emissions on energy related, both production and transportation; waste and agriculture make minor contributions • Significant growth since 1990s fueled by expanding oil, gas and forestry sectors – most designed for export markets • Conference Board of Canada report card

  29. Accounting for Canada’s Climate Change Policy Economic interests; energy exports; US policy coordination Multilateralism – declining importance, influence Federalism – lack of coordination Reduced influence of environmental lobby; scientific community Government is leaning heavily to shutting down dissent

  30. Canada’s Immigration Policy “When I speak of quality, I have in mind something that is quite different from what is in the mind of the average writer or speaker upon the question of immigration. I think of a stalwart peasant in a sheep-skin coat, born on the soil, whose forefathers have been farmers for generations, with a stout wife and half-a-dozen children, is good quality.” Sir Clifford Sifton, 1922 The Public Policy Framework

  31. The data and tables for this section and related information can be found here: • Citizenship and Immigration Canada (

  32. Establishing categories 1976: New Immigration Act defines the 3 main priorities of immigration policy: . Priority 1: family reunification . Priority 2: humanitarian concerns . Priority 3: promotion of Canada’s economic, social, demographic, and cultural goals These priorities have varied in emphasis, but still form the core of our immigration policy The Public Policy Framework

  33. Demographic and Labour Concerns • mid 1980s increasing concern over future immigration levels in response to fertility patterns in Canada which had fallen and remain below replacement levels • Early 1990s family class was reduced by limiting range of family members included; • government commits to stable inflows of about 1% of the current population • The switch to long term goals and the desire to increase the numbers of skilled workers continued through the 1990s (the birth of “designer immigration”) The Public Policy Framework

  34. Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, 2002 • To streamline several areas of the immigration process, including those for selecting applicants and ruling on refugee claims; • To broaden criteria for selecting immigrants, both to make it easier to bring in skilled workers and to promote the reunification of families; and, • In the wake of September 11, 2001, to implement measures that would remove or keep out persons who were inadmissible on grounds of security, violating human rights, or involvement in criminal activity or organized crime.

  35. 2012 Budget and Immigration • Close domestic offices and lay off more than 100 people • Close visa offices in Japan, Malaysia, Bangladesh, Iran and Germany