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Incorporation: Nunavut became a territory of Canada on April 1, 1999.

Location: Nunavut was once the eastern part of Canada's Northwest Territories.  The rest of Northwest Territories borders Nunavut to the west.  Manitoba borders Nunavut on the south and Hudson Bay on the east.  Greenland is north-east of Nunavut and the Arctic Ocean lies to the north.

Area: 772,000 square miles (1,235,200 square kilometers). Nunavut is larger than the combined areas of Alaska and California.

Population: 25,000

Capitol: Iqaluit (ee-KAH-loo-eet)

People: Inuit, 85 percent; non-native 15 percent

Official Languages: Inuktitut, English, French

Climate: The winters are cold and dark, with temperatures averaging twenty-five degrees below zero F.  During winter, the North Pole tilts away from the sun, leaving Nunavut in the dark for most of the season.  The summers can be mild with almost continual daylight during June and July.  The average temperature is forty-one degrees F.  Nunavut receives an average of only ten inches of precipitation per year.  However, the land supports a rich flora.  Thick, spongy blankets of moss, lichen, and stubby ground creeping willows, and abundant flowers thrive in the summer months.

Terrain: The flat land of Nunavut is called tundra.  The ground beneath the top layer of soil is permanently frozen.  The top layer of soil may thaw for a short time during summer.  Mainland Nunavut and Baffin Island are part of the Canadian Shield - a region that rests on hard rock formed billions of years ago.

Highest Point: Mount Barbeau, 8,583 feet (2,616 meters)*

*text compliments of Faces People, Places, and Cultures, edited by Elizabeth Crooker

 

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