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Mission to North Pole Launched by Canada

As a part of a scientific mission to bolster its territorial claims on oil and natural gas rich areas around the North Pole, Canada dispatched a ship to explore its northern scabbed and the Arctic Ocean as reported by BBC on Saturday.

A ice breaker of Canada set sail on Friday from Newfoundland and Labrador to be followed by another vessel on Saturday.

Amid Competing Territorial Claims, Canada Launches Mission To North Pole Photo Credit: FreeDigitalPhotos

Amid Competing Territorial Claims, Canada Launches Mission To North Pole
Photo Credit: FreeDigitalPhotos

The undersea ridge that starts near the Ellesmere Island — the northernmost Canadian Island — and extends towards the North Pole said to be known as Lomonosov Ridge is the place where the six week mission will analyze data will be collected. Claims have also been laid by Norway, Denmark and Russia on the region believed to hold nearly 13 percent of the world’s undiscovered oil depositss and 30 percent of its hidden natural gas reserves.

Russia states that the ridge is an underwater extension of the Russain continental shelf whereas Denmark has reported claimed that the ridge is an extension Greenland.

“As demonstrated by these planned surveys, our government is committing the resources necessary to ensure that Canada secures international recognition of the full extent of its continental shelf, including the North Pole,” John Baird, the Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister said in a statement on Friday.

With a view to expand its Atlantic sea boundary to include the Lomonosov ridge and areas near the North Pole, Canada has filed an application with United Nations in December in that regard. Russia too had officially demanded a revision of the outer limits of its continental shelf with United Nations claiming their stake way back in 2001.

Leona Aglukkaq, the Canadian Environment Minister, said in a statement that the mission was aimed at securing Canada’s sovereignty by defining its borders. “This is important to Canadians, especially those in the North, as this is their future and prosperity at stake.”

A second survey to collect additional data will also be conducted in 2015 as reported by the Canadian government.

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