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Perdre le nord ?

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For over five centuries, navigators and explorers the world over—Frobisher, Hudson, Franklin, and Nansen, among others—have tried to circumnavigate North America in search of a short route to the wealth of the Orient. Their efforts to find the Northwest passage—a deadly labyrinth of ice, straits, and small islands—lead nowhere and often ended in bitter death. Amundsen was the first to pick a path through the narrow fissures of the ice-floe and on to the Pacific during a three-year voyage aboard his ship the Gjøa.

Over the past few summers, vast expanses of the Arctic Ocean have been free of ice, allowing light boats to cross over to the Pacific without a problem. This is only a sample of what lies ahead. Climatologists are predicting what once seemed impossible: in as little as fifty years time the Northwest Passage will be free of ice and open to navigation for the entire summer. Once inaccessible resources will equally be open to exploitation. Will this be a new Eldorado for Canada? Perhaps not. Access to the Northwest Passage has important and surprising legal ramifications. The international community doesn’t recognize Canada’s sovereignty over the Passage, stating that any link between two oceans falls automatically under international jurisdiction.

Today, the Great North and the Arctic are at the forefront of world concerns because of global warming and the Northwest Passage. The melting of Arctic ice will have crucial environmental, socio-economic and political consequences for Canada, forcing our country to redefine its relationship to its neighbours—the United States (Alaska), Russia, Norway and Denmark (Greenland)—in the circumpolar region.

Parution : 25 septembre 2007, 264 pages
ISBN-13 : 9782764605363
Code barre : 9782764605363

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