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Your Home. Your Land. Your Decision.

Nunavut Land Use Plan, the largest regional land use planning initiative in the world.

About the Plan

After more than 15 years of engagement and consultation, the fifth draft of the plan is ready for finalization. When finalized, the Plan, covering more than 2 million km2 of land, water, and ocean, will be the largest regional land use plan in the world.

The Nunavut Land Use Plan is the largest piece of unfinished business from the Nunavut Agreement which was signed in 1993. The Nunavut Land Use Plan is the missing piece for Inuit to fully participate in decision-making concerning the use, management and conservation of land, water and resources.

Limited Use Areas

Limited Use designations will safeguard approximately 27% of habitat. Limited Use Areas meet all the international criteria of a Protected Area and trigger the requirement for an Inuit Impact Benefit Agreement required by Article 9 of the Nunavut Agreement.

“Once adopted, it will provide certainty over protecting our land, air, and waters, and for how we can develop our Territory to benefit all of the people of Nunavut.”

Paul Quassa, Former Primer NPC Commission Chair

What was Said

Over the past 12 months, multiple community hearings were held in an attempt to better understand the viewpoints of those living in communities most affected by the Plan. Explore the link below to see what these communities members had to say.

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Stories from the Land

Developed over a 15-year period in consultation with Nunavummiut, the Nunavut Land Use Plan aims to promote and strengthen Inuit culture and heritage through the identification of local priorities for environmental and wildlife habitat conservation, and economic development. The collection and transfer of Inuit Qaujimajatuqangit, first hand knowledge obtained from elders, has informed all aspects of the Plan.

Selected Considerations

  •  Healthier Communities: The Commission’s goal of building healthier communities is central to its broad planning policies. This includes the promotion and strengthening of Inuit culture and heritage as integral aspects of healthier communities. Priorities include energy requirements, community infrastructure (health, housing, education), cultural priorities, and local considerations.
  •  Clean Drinking Water: Clean drinking water supplies are essential components of healthy communities. The quality and quantity of water can be influenced by land use activities in the watershed areas. The Commission identifies current and potential water sources to maintain water quality.
  •  Fisheries: The commercial fishing industry, including species like turbot, char, and shrimp, is recognized as significant for the territory’s economy. Fishing zones are managed to support this industry sustainably.
  •  Minerals: Nunavut is noted for its mineral potential with active exploration for gold, precious metals, and base metals. The plan accommodates and encourages mining activities in specified areas, balancing economic benefits with environmental and community needs.
  •  Alternative Energy: Reducing reliance on imported fossil fuels through alternative energy sources such as hydro, wind, and solar is a priority. Specific sites for hydro-electric generation have been identified to support this initiative.
  •  Polar Bears: Polar bear habitats are protected as crucial components of the territory’s wildlife ecosystem. The plan includes special provisions to manage activities during the polar bear denning season to mitigate human impact on this vulnerable species.
  •  Aerodromes: Aerodromes are essential for community connectivity and are managed under federal regulations to ensure safe operation. These areas are critical for the transportation infrastructure of Nunavut.
  •  Oil and Gas: The plan outlines areas with potential for oil and gas development and includes regulations to manage environmental impacts. This sector is seen as a significant component of Nunavut’s economic landscape.