Canada and Nunavut announce the creation of a new territorial park

Agguttinni Territorial Park, north of Clyde River, will include part of the Barnes Ice Cap, as well as areas of cultural and ecological significance.

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Canada’s federal government and the Government of Nunavut have announced the creation of Agguttinni Territorial Park, to be located north of Clyde River. (Nunatsiaq News file photo)

There will be a new territorial park north of Clyde River, the governments of Nunavut and Canada announced Monday.

The federal government will invest $4.7 million toward the creation of the new park, called Agguttinni Territorial Park.

“This joint Government of Nunavut–Inuit initiative will create a park that includes a quarter of the Barnes Ice Cap, a significant source of fresh water for Baffin Island, numerous cultural sites of importance for Inuit, important bird areas, and key habitat for polar bears and caribou,” a news release said.

The new park will be the largest under the territorial government’s jurisdiction, said Joe Savikataaq, Nunavut’s premier and environment minister, in the release.

“In collaboration with our parks’ joint-planning-and-management partners, the establishment of Agguttinni Territorial Park will support the protection and celebration of Nunavut’s rich natural beauty as well as the development of tourism infrastructure,” Savikataaq said.

Earlier this year, Nunavut’s Department of Environment put out a call for applications from people living in Clyde River to sit on a committee for the new territorial park.

Nunavut’s proposal for Agguttinni Territorial Park was part of the Pathway to Canada Target 1 Challenge, a federal fund that helps protect 17 percent of Canada’s land and freshwater.

“The creation of the Agguttinni Territorial Park is the result of a strong collaborative partnership between the people of Clyde River and the Government of Nunavut. For many years, Clyde River and the Government of Nunavut have invested time and resources in protecting this special area,” said the release.

The $4.7 million is part of the Canada Nature Fund, which dedicates $500 million to protected areas and species at risk.

Earlier this year, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced the creation of Tuvaijuittuq Marine Protected Area off the northwest coast of Ellesmere Island and the competition of the Tallurutiup Imanga National Marine Conservation Area.