Greenlanders Go To the Polls on Self-Rule

I write this entry mostly because I wanted to include the title “Greenlanders Go To the Polls”. How often do you get to say that? In any case, the 39,000-strong population of Greenland is voting in a referendum on greater independence from Denmark:

If the “yes” side wins, the local Greenland government has the chance to take control of new areas such as natural resource management, justice and police affairs and to a certain extent foreign affairs.

There are potentially lucrative revenues from the natural resources under Greenland’s seabed, which according to international experts is home to large oil deposits. Greenlandic would also be recognised as the island’s official language.

In case you were wondering (and I sure was), Greenlandic is a close cousin of the Inuit languages.


  1. I don’t think anyone has been suggesting that — certainly, despite its proximity to Canada, Greenland’s economic ties are overwhelmingly European. I don’t think there are even any direct commercial travel routes, air or sea, between Canada and Greenland. (The short-lived seasonal U.S.-Greenland air route was cancelled in March.)

    You pretty much have to go through Copenhagen, or maybe Iceland, to get there, and the money flows are similar. Even the electricity is 220 V as in Europe.

    Darren, is that 39,000 population number the voting populace? Most stats I’ve seen give a population over 56,000, still somewhat less than the approximately 70,000 of Nunavut and the Northwest Territories combined.

    Interestingly, if you add the populations of the Yukon, Northwest Territories, Nunavut, and Greenland together, you still have fewer people than the city of Richmond, B.C. No wonder infrastructure is so difficult and expensive to maintain in the Arctic…

  2. Derek: I’m not sure on the population. I got it from the article, which says “39,000 people in Greenland vote on Tuesday…” so maybe that’s registered voters?

  3. So dumb. While the rest of the world is busy integrating into bigger blocs, recognizing the futility of standing alone Greenlanders are going the other way for a quick cash grab.

    Why haven’t we heard anything about the Danes “transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny” in their poor little colony? Nothing about “cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world”…

    That’s odd.

    You’d think a bunch of people living on hardscrabble rock and ice would understand the benefits of uniting, not dividing.

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