'No negotiations:' Inuit group wants Arctic areas saved from development
A Canadian military Griffon helicopter flies along the shoreline of Baffin Island on Tuesday August 26, 2014. An Inuit land claim group is asking the federal government to permanently rope off large sections of the eastern Arctic to any future industrial development.
IQALUIT, Nunavut -- An Inuit land-claim group is asking the federal government to permanently protect large sections of the Eastern Arctic from any industrial development.
The request is part of a huge effort to map out how and where oil, gas and mining should go ahead on land and water around Baffin Island and how they can co-exist with traditional Inuit life. It comes in the final year of a five-year moratorium on Arctic offshore energy development, which is to be reconsidered in 2020.
"There's some very highly sensitive areas," said P.J. Akeeagok, president of the Qikiqtani Inuit Association. "There's no negotiations on certain points in terms of areas where we feel there's absolutely no way we see an opportunity for oil and gas."