To what extent should Canada protect its Arctic Sovereignty?
Canadian Arctic Sovereignty is currently a pressing issue has raised many questions about who owns and who has control over the Arctic and its precious resources. The posing question is; to what extent should Canada protect its Arctic Sovereignty? There are many reasons why Canada must go forward in defending and protecting the Arctic to a moderate extent even though it will be a challenging mission considering that the Canadian military currently needs more resources in order to properly defend the Arctic. They must defend the population of Inuit that currently reside in the Arctic must be protected because their way of life is changing due to their changing landscape. The gain
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So now why should Canada defend the Arctic? Canadians should be concerned about what could possibly happen if the Northwest Passage were to be made an international shipping route. The route could facilitate the entry of drugs, arms/weapons, illegal immigrants and even terrorists into what is currently the poorly defended northern Canada (Byers). There could be an increase in ocean accidents, especially in cold waters and ice flow which could result in costly rescue missions (Byers). Currently, Canada does not have a proper search and rescue base in the Arctic and does not have the military equipment to support search and rescue missions. An oil leak from a super-tanker would prove to be catastrophic to the fragile Arctic marine and land ecosystems (Byers). Unless Canada were to be able to heavily regulate all vessels within the passage, the dangers and threats of the Northwest Passage as an international shipping route are far too great for Canada to not defend the Arctic. An action of defence must be at least considered if Canada wants to keep its Arctic Sovereignty.
Canada must defend its Arctic Sovereignty for a number of reasons but is it even possible? Right now, the Canadian military is not equipped with the resources that it needs in order to properly defend the Arctic. The government can barely afford to upgrade its line of