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Arctic myths up for discussion at Policy, Pizza and a Pint at News Café Wednesday

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Ice floes float in Baffin Bay above the arctic circle from the Canadian Coast Guard icebreaker Louis S. St-Laurent.

JONATHAN HAYWARD / CANADIAN PRESS ARCHIVES Enlarge Image

Ice floes float in Baffin Bay above the arctic circle from the Canadian Coast Guard icebreaker Louis S. St-Laurent.

The Arctic – it’s not just for dogsled races anymore.

In fact, the vast area to the north is increasingly becoming a focus of Canadian public policy, particularly now that Canada has assumed the chair of the Arctic Council.

But what people think is going on in the Arctic, and what is actually happening, is often completely different, according to Dr. Andrea Charron, an assistant professor of political studies at the University of Manitoba.

That’s why she’s headlining "Policy, Pizza and a Pint" at the Winnipeg Free Press News Café at 237 McDermot Ave. on Wednesday at 6 p.m.

She’s going to present a Top 10 list of Arctic myths and discuss how the disconnect with reality is impacting public policy. It’s meant to "shake people’s worlds."

"I start with a warning - for Canadians, this is going to hurt. It’s going to be against what we normally think about the Arctic. The automatic response will be railing against this evidence," she said.

For example, did you know that the Arctic isn’t a significant contributor to Canada’s GDP? In fact, it generates less than one per cent of the country’s total output each year.

Ten bucks gets you a piece of pizza and a pint. The debate and discussion are free.

***

Policy, Pizza, and a Pint is an outreach series produced by the Manitoba Institute for Public Policy (MIPR).

By engaging Manitobans and increasing access to policy experts in the community, it hopes to enhance the quality of public discourse in the province.

geoff.kirbyson@freepress.mb.ca

 

Top 10 Canadian Myths about the Arctic

1. "Our" Arctic has 3 territories
2. The true north is strong and free
3. There is a legal vacuum in the Arctic
4. "Our" sovereignty is in peril
5. Northerners are opposed to any resource extraction
6. Canada’s Arctic is a large contributor to Canada’s overall GDP
7. Canada’s lead Arctic agency is the DND/CAF
8. Canada’s Arctic is under threat by the Russians, Chinese, US and/or Al Qaeda
9. Canadian government vessels can operate all year long
10. Climate change is a driver of economic opportunities

- Source: Dr. Andrea Charron

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