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Peter Mansbridge

April 14, 2022 by Speakers' Spotlight

Peter Mansbridge’s New Doc Explores Socio-Political Impact of the Melting Arctic

To kick-off Earth Week, CBC is airing Peter Mansbridge’s new documentary on April 18. It explores the impact of climate change in the Arctic, and what this means for the people who call it home and the countries that border it.

Since retiring as CBC News’ chief correspondent and anchor of The National, Peter has created his own production company to develop documentary films. He spent much of 2021 aboard the HMCS Harry DeWolf, Canada’s new arctic warship, as it made its maiden voyage through the iconic Northwest Passage, to film a CBC Docs Special, Arctic Blue with Peter Mansbridge.

Peter’s new documentary takes an in-depth look at Canada’s claim to the North and explores the question — who will have authority over the Arctic when it’s no longer covered in ice?

The Arctic is surrounded by eight countries, all of which eyeing the new possibilities that the melting ice provides them — shipping routes and mineral exploitation. Many countries are already trying to stake their claim.

“Debates will not just be about security, they’ll also be about the potential billions in natural resources and hundreds of thousands of new jobs that come with them — in a region desperate for both,” Peter writes in an opinion piece for CBC. “And Canada is lagging behind the advancements made by the other Arctic nations in preparation for the journey toward those riches.”

However, there are already people there who call it home — the Inuit. They see themselves as part of one large circumpolar family, Peter writes, whose traditions are threatened by the loss of the ice.

Canada already has a troubling past with the Inuit who call the Arctic home, Peter continued. They were relocated there by the Canadian government to lay claim to the Arctic. Of course, the Inuit were not a part of this conversation. While told they could always return to their original homes if they so choose, this never came to fruition. They were forced to adapt, and now the melting ice caps come with both peril and opportunity.

In Arctic Blue, Peter meets with community members who discuss the struggle they’re facing to find balance between tradition and encouraging industrialization and tourism to alleviate poverty within their communities.

See more in the trailer below. Arctic Blue with Peter Mansbridge airs on April 18 at 8pm.

For more than five decades, Canadians have trusted Peter Mansbridge to guide them through the political, economic, and cultural events that have shaped our nation. Through his keynotes, Peter takes audiences on a journey through our shared national story and heritage while sharing lessons on how to cultivate trust and lead through extraordinary times.