Six new icebreakers announced for Canadian Coast Guard

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The federal government will build six new icebreakers in the coming years, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans, and the Canadian Coast Guard Jonathan Wilkinson announced August 2.

Department of Fisheries and Oceans and the Coast Guard Jonathan Wilkinson, left, and Minister of Environment and Climate Change Catherine McKenna discuss changing sea ice with Canadian Coast Guard staff in Iqaluit August 2 prior to announcing the federal government will build six new icebreakers in the coming years.
Michele LeTourneau/NNSL photo

Wilkinson was joined by Minister of Environment and Climate Change Catherine McKenna at the Iqaluit announcement.

“The Canadian Coast Guard saves lives at sea, maintains safe shipping, enables an otherwise ice-choked economy, protects the marine environment and supports Canadian sovereign presence in the Arctic,” stated Wilkinson.

“Demands on the Coast Guard will only grow as the impacts of climate change become more frequent and intense. By adding the new program icebreakers to renew the fleet, we are ensuring the women and men of the Canadian Coast Guard have the equipment they need to deliver icebreaking services in the Arctic, on the St. Lawrence waterway and on Canada’s East Coast.”

The six icebreakers are in addition to the 16 multi-purpose vessels and two new Arctic and offshore patrol ships announced by the federal government in May. The federal government is investing more than $15 billion to renew the Coast Guard fleet.

More to come.

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Michele LeTourneau first arrived at NNSL's headquarters in Yellowknife in1998, with a BA honours in Theatre. For four years she documented the arts across the Northwest Territories and Nunavut. Following a very short stint as a communications officer with the Government of the Northwest Territories, Michele spent a decade at a community-based environmental monitoring board in the mining industry, where she worked with Inuit, Chipewyan, Tlicho, Yellowknives Dene and Metis elders to help develop traditional knowledge and Inuit Qaujimajatuqangit contributions for monitoring and management plans. She rejoined NNSL and moved to Iqaluit in May 2014 to write for Nunavut News. Michele has received a dozen awards for her work with NNSL.