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Nunavut (NU) means "our land" in Inuktitut. It is the largest and newest federal territory of Canada, separated officially from the Northwest Territories on April 1, 1999. Nunavut is one of the most remote, sparsely settled regions in the world and home to the northernmost permanently inhabited place in the world. Settlements are very small and clustered mainly along the coasts.
Most of the territory is above the northern tree growth. Much of the islands north of the mainland are permanently covered in snow and ice.
Nunavut is governed by a Legislative Assembly of 19 elected members. The members choose a government leader, speaker of the house and eight ministers by consensus. There are 10 departments with offices in nine different communities. Each community has a hamlet office, which is responsible for municipal government activities.
Cities, Towns & Communities
License plate slogan
Date NU became a territory
JApril 1, 1999
Area of NU
2,093,190 sq km (808,185 sq miles)
Nunavut makes up 20% of Canada's land mass and 67% of its coastline. It includes islands in Hudson Bay, James Bay and Ungava Bay.
Nunavut has two distinct geological regions: the Canadian Shield (mainland and islands around Hudson Bay) and the Arctic Archipelago (islands) in the north. The mainland is almost untouched wilderness, and tundra changes into cliffs and plateaus along the Northwest Passage. The Arctic islands are surrounded by pack ice almost year round, and the region extends to glaciers, jagged mountains and fjords of Baffin and Ellesmere Islands.
Capital city of NU
Population of NU
31,906 (Statistics Canada, 2011 Census). Nunavut has the highest birthrate at 25 per 1000 and 51% of the population is under 25 years of age.
Residents are known as
Indigenous people of NU
Main NU industries
Mining, resource development, tourism, arts and crafts
NU statutory holidays (in addition to national holidays)
Nunavut Day, July 9
Source: Government of Canada Maps
Nunavut is entirely within the Arctic climatic zone with bitterly cold winters and cool to cold summers. See Iqaluit on the Weather Network for more information.
Nunavut has three time zones and observes daylight savings time.
Mountain Daylight Time (MDT) in Cambridge Bay
Central Daylight Time (CDT) in Baker Lake
Eastern Standard Time (EST) in Coral Harbour