February 23, 2011

Canada Invests In New Arctic Weather Tracking Services

The Canadian government announced Tuesday it plans to invest 35 million dollars in meteorological and navigational warning services in the Arctic over the next five years to provide enhanced accessibility to weather data and shipping information for mariners, businesses and the general population there.

Researchers suggest that global warming could leave the region free of ice by 2030, which could open up navigation and access for oil companies looking to capitalize on the massive reserves there.

"Our government's investment in new navigational areas will allow the Canadian Coast Guard to improve the coverage for Arctic areas not currently covered by satellite," Fisheries Minister, Gail Shea, told AFP news agency in statement.

"This improves navigational safety information services for mariners in the Arctic Ocean," she added.

The government said that weather and ice forecast services and warnings will be provided 24 hours a day. Bulletins will continue to be distributed as part of the Global Maritime Distress and Safety System in areas where satellite coverage exists. In areas where satellite is not available, alerts will be given via high frequency radios.

Canada also recently instituted a new satellite reception and processing station in Resolute Bay, Nunavut.


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