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Mining a Better Future: Approaching Economic Growth and Sustainable Communities in Context of Mining in Nunavut

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Resource development near isolated communities in Nunavut exacerbates preexisting social problems that are insufficiently ameliorated by the policy frameworks addressing them. Data from Baker Lake shows rising crime rates correlating with the mine’s arrival; and failure to ameliorate stagnant, declining education outcomes. The current framework of policy is comprised of loosely coordinated efforts by the federal and territorial governments. Supplemental community-driven research was found to identify additional interventions that garner renewed local support and heightened efficacy. Economic modeling of estimated costs and benefits of these interventions within three alternatives: a local, regional, or territorial rollout, revealed plausible net benefits at various discount rates. Additional qualitative evidence of pros and cons for each alternative supported recommendation of up to three local pilot project(s) to assess efficacy of these interventions to mitigate, ameliorate, and prevent the negative side effects of resource development in Nunavut, and remove barriers to equitable sustainable economic growth.
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