Arctic Fibre begins Nunavut route surveys announces dream of arctic broadband one step closer to reality
Tuesday, Jul 30, 2013
A separate site visit to Deception Bay in Nunavik, Northern Quebec, will follow the Nunavut excursion to ascertain the viability of building a spur off the backbone to meet the bandwidth requirements of mining companies in the area.
The determination of the cable landing locations and Boothia Crossing route will form part of the company’s submissions to the Nunavut Impact Review Board (NIRB) and the Nunavut Planning Commission (NPC). Approvals from NIRB and NPC are prerequisites to the issuance of an International Submarine Cable Landing Licence from the Minister Responsible for Industry Canada.
Arctic Fibre submitted its licence application to Industry Canada last October but finalization of the survey schedule required ice clearance at all landing points. The finalization of landing site locations will enable Arctic Fibre to refine its undersea routes and undertake the detailed marine studies later this year and with the bulk of the work being completed in 2014. The scheduled in-service date for the $620 million backbone network between London and Tokyo is December 2015.
By combining an Arctic broadband network in the same cable sheath with a trans-continental link between Asian and European financial centres, Arctic Fibre can build a backbone network serving half of the population of Nunavut without government subsidy.
In February the Company submitted a $237 million proposal to Industry Canada which would extend the fibre cable to 23 additional northern communities with the assistance of nine microwave hops. This secondary network expansion, which would require some form of government support, would ensure the provision of virtually unlimited bandwidth to 98% of the combined Nunavut and Nunavik population, thereby supporting both economic and social development, while contributing significantly to Canada’s nation-building in its Arctic region.
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