Canada and Nunavut announce new territorial park

Agguttinni Territorial Park north of Clyde River will be the largest under Nunavut’s jurisdiction

The federal government and Government of Nunavut have announced the creation of Agguttinni Territorial Park, located north of Clyde River. (File photo)

By Emma Tranter

There will be a new territorial park north of Clyde River, the Government of Nunavut and Canada announced Sept. 10.

The federal government will invest $4.7 million toward the creation of the new park, called Agguttinni Territorial Park.

“This joint Government of Nunavut–Inuit initiative will create a park that includes a quarter of the Barnes Ice Cap, a significant source of fresh water for Baffin Island, numerous cultural sites of importance for Inuit, important bird areas, and key habitat for polar bears and caribou,” a news release said.

The new park will be the largest under the territorial government’s jurisdiction, said Joe Savikataaq, Nunavut’s premier and environment minister, in the release.

“In collaboration with our parks’ joint-planning-and-management partners, the establishment of Agguttinni Territorial Park will support the protection and celebration of Nunavut’s rich natural beauty as well as the development of tourism infrastructure,” Savikataaq said.

Earlier this year, Nunavut’s Department of Environment put out a call for applications from people living in Clyde River to sit on a committee for the new territorial park.

Nunavut’s proposal for Agguttinni Territorial Park was part of the Pathway to Canada Target 1 Challenge, a federal fund that helps protect 17 per cent of Canada’s land and freshwater.

“The creation of the Agguttinni Territorial Park is the result of a strong collaborative partnership between the people of Clyde River and the Government of Nunavut. For many years, Clyde River and the Government of Nunavut have invested time and resources in protecting this special area,” said the release.

The $4.7 million is part of the Canada Nature Fund, which dedicates $500 million to protected areas and species at risk.

Earlier this year, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced the creation of Tuvaijuittuq Marine Protected Area off the northwest coast of Ellesmere Island and the completion of the Tallurutiup Imanga National Marine Conservation Area.

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(6) Comments:

  1. Posted by Another Big Win on

    Another big win for the “Conservation Economy”!

    Honoraria, and a handful of small contracts and seasonal jobs in perpetuity!

    We’ve secured the community’s economic future and kept big industry from the door!

    In case it’s not obvious, I’m being sarcastic. This is a legal fiction, a bureaucratic make-work project and a major distraction from the serious work that this territory needs to do to figure out its economic future. If you think that spawning a bunch of unnecessary (and increasingly vast) parks in exchange for IIBA benefits is the solution – or even a significant part of the solution – you are deluding yourself.

  2. Posted by Disgruntled on

    So they’re screwing over mining opportunities and investing nearly $10M in a new park that will be lucky to get 15+ out-of-town visitors per year? Embarrassing. This government’s priorities are ass-backwards. We absolutely need a new government on election day.

    • Posted by Jay Arnakak on

      how long do you think a typical mine lasts, pray-tell? IIBAs…you and Another Big Win are like that judge in Pink Floyd’s The Wall who poises himself to crap on Pinky. Your wig (ie, ignorance) is no fig leaf, my friend.

      tourism is a significant industry in even small communities like where I am now (Coral Harbour – bet you can’t even point it out on a map) where there has been a constant flow of sports hunters and eco-tourists since I’ve been here.

      BTW Clyde River is a world-renown start off point for mountaineers and people who are into extreme sports. Crap on that.

  3. Posted by Putuguk on

    Congratulations to Clyde River on this important milestone. I really hope that the tourism focus that they want can be developed to meet their needs.

    Their Parks Committee has its work cut out for it, and we should all wish them the absolute best and support them as much as possible. They will need all the help they can get.

    There are 330 people under the age of 15 in this community. They will need a way to make a living within the next decade. Also, a quarter of the community is without a job – that is another 160 adults in Clyde River that need a job right now.

    That is around 500 people in Clyde River whose productive future will now rests with the development of the tourism potential of Agguttinni. That is a a ton of guiding, outfitter, management, logistics, food services, housekeeping and maintenance jobs that need to be created and maintained. If people in Clyde think giving up resource development potential around the community is only worth one local parks officer job, they should be setting their sights higher.

    Whether the conservation economy can deliver prosperity to Nunavut deserves serious consideration. It is a very worthy goal, albeit hypothetical. People in that community need to apply hard work and dedication to thoroughly test this concept. Certainly everyone in the territory will be watching for signs of success.

    • Posted by Observer on

      “Certainly everyone in the territory will be watching for signs of success.”

      Based on experience, actual tourism numbers, costs for getting to the territory, and the very seasonal nature of any jobs that there might be, we’re going to be waiting a very, very long time. In 2018-2019, Auyuittuq (which is nearby, so a good measure) had 853 visitors. The vast majority of them were on ships, which, again based on experience, only stay a few hours and have passengers who notoriously don’t spend very much money.

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