RESOLUTE, NU, July 31, 2015 /CNW/ - The Honourable Leona Aglukkaq, Minister of the Environment, Minister of the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency and Minister for the Arctic Council, on behalf of the Honourable Greg Rickford, Canada's Minister of Natural Resources, today announced an investment of up to $4.4 million for science and infrastructure upgrades to Natural Resources Canada's Polar Continental Shelf Program facility in Resolute, Nunavut. This new funding builds on the Government of Canada's unprecedented and historic investment in public infrastructure to ensure Canada's economic growth for years to come.
The Polar Continental Shelf Program provides critical logistical support to researchers working in Canada's North. This investment in the program's Resolute Arctic logistics hub will improve the energy efficiency of the facility as well as provide researchers with improved logistical and communications services, allowing the Polar Continental Shelf Program to operate in a more efficient and cost-effective manner.
Across the country, the Government of Canada is investing $380 million in federal laboratories and research facilities for major repairs and upgrades that will improve their ability to enable leading-edge research. New investments like the one announced today will help ensure that Canada's natural resource sectors continue to support and create jobs. The development of natural resources is key to Nunavut's economy, directly and indirectly accounts for almost one-fifth of Canada's nominal GDP and employs 1.8 million Canadians.
- In 2013, the Government of Canada announced the New Building Canada Plan, the largest and longest federal commitment to infrastructure in Canadian history, with some $70 billion pledged over the next decade. In November 2014, Prime Minister Harper announced an additional $5.8 billion to build and renew federal government infrastructure across the country.
- Beginning in 1958 as a modest scientific field operation based in Resolute, Nunavut, the Polar Continental Shelf Program has evolved into a large-scale Arctic logistics provider, supporting an average of 140 research projects each year across the full expanse of Canada's North.
- The Polar Continental Shelf Program facility in Resolute also supports the Geo-Mapping for Energy and Minerals Program, Polar Knowledge Canada's science and technology program; provides logistics to Canadian Armed Forces Arctic training exercises in Resolute; and hosts the Canadian Armed Forces Arctic Training Centre.
- In addition to supporting this facility, Prime Minister Stephen Harper also launched the creation of the Canadian High Arctic Research Station (CHARS) in Cambridge Bay, Nunavut, which will further strengthen Canada's position as a world leader in cutting-edge research in the Arctic.
- Supporting these facilities will not only promote Canadian sovereignty and stewardship of Canada's Arctic lands, waters and resources, but also support the local economy by generating employment and service contracts in the region.
"Today's announcement is part of our government's unprecedented and historic infrastructure investments to support economic growth in Nunavut and across Canada. Upgrading research facilities in Resolute will not only help to support responsible resource development through leading-edge research, but will also encourage job creation and long-term prosperity."
The Honourable Leona Aglukkaq
Minister of the Environment, Minister of the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency and Minister for the Arctic Council
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SOURCE Natural Resources Canada
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