Our compass points to the north for our Geo Quiz.
The place we’re looking for is the northernmost region of Atlantic Canada.
A Portuguese explorer, Joao Fernandes Lavrador, first mapped out these shores back in the 15th century.
It’s just north of Québec. And across the Strait of Belle Isle.
There are several indigenous peoples including the Inuit and the Innu who live here.
To survive in this sometimes bitterly cold region up near the Arctic Circle, the Innu live off the land. They depend on caribou, or reindeer as they’re called in other parts of the world — for food, shelter and warmth.
It’s an ancient tradition but one that’s changing as industrial development in the Arctic regions threatens the caribou herds.
Can you name this northernmost region of Canada?
Jonathan Mazower, advocacy director for Survival International talks about the important role that reindeer play in many Arctic cultures.
Some indigenous tribes including the Innu of Labrador and Québec are struggling to maintain caribou herds in the face of development and climate change.
Flashback: The Caribou of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge
Populations of reindeer, or caribou, are scattered across the top of the world, from Canada to Scandinavia to Russia to Alaska. In 1997 The World‘s environment editor Peter Thomson traveled to far northern Alaska to report for the public radio program Living on Earth on the caribou that migrate through the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, and the native communities there that depend on the animals for their survival.
Peter’s award-winning documentary came amid a heated debate over whether to allow oil drilling in part of the refuge, widely known as ANWR–a debate that continues to flare up today. With special thanks to our PRI sister program Living on Earth, we’ve posted the documentary below, along with Peter’s companion report on oil, Eskimos, and changing ways of life along the Arctic shore farther west in Alaska. With its early hints of changing weather and migratory patterns in the Arctic due to climate change, the documentary is an eerie premonition of things to come at the top of the world.
Read environment editor Peter Thomson’s blog post on his recollections–and lessons–from his 1997 reporting trip to northern Alaska.