Canada's Arctic Cordillera Ecozone is one of the world’s most sparsely populated areas. The communities of Broughton Island and Clyde River are home to only about 1 000 people (1991).
The Inuit, who have occupied the region for 1 000 years or more, form over 80% of the population. They consist of regional groups that share a unique heritage and one language with several dialects.
Arctic communities feature a mixture of traditional and cash economies. Much of the local population depends on subsistence hunting, trapping, and fishing -- activities highly valued for their contributions to independence, self-esteem, tradition, and a healthy lifestyle. Residents are also involved in mining, oil and gas development, construction, services, and government activities. Those Inuit employed full-time as wage earners turn to weekend and part-time hunting to supplement their diet with preferred meats. Some tourism is linked with Bylot Island and Auyuittuq national parks.