Essay, Research Paper: Greenland

Geography

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The geography of Greenland is quite ironic considering its name. Greenland is located
in the northern part of North America. It is between the Arctic Ocean and the
North Atlantic Ocean, northeast of Canada. Greenland’s area is approximately
2,715,600 square kilometers. Its area is slightly more than 3 times the size of
Texas. It is the largest island in the world. It is also primarily by the Davis
Strait and Baffin Bay and from Iceland on the east, by the Denmark Strait.
Greenland’s terrain is flat to a gradually sloping icecap. It covers
everything but a narrow, mountainous, rocky coast. It’s climate has cool
summers and very cold winters! During the summertime in the southern part of
Greenland, the average Temperature is 48° Fahrenheit. The climate of Greenland
is generally dry. People have lived on Greenland for about 5, 000 years, the
earliest belonging to what are called the Independence I, Saqqaq, and
Independence II cultures. Greenland is the source of many weather changes in the
Northern Hemisphere. Their natural resources include Zinc, lead, iron ore, coal,
gold, platinum, uranium, fish, seals and whales. The mammals include the
musk-ox, wolf, lemming, and reindeer. Circumpolar animals that inhabit the
island are the polar bear, arctic fox, polar hare, and stoat. The environmental
issues consist of protecting the arctic environment and preservation of their
traditional way of life, including whaling. The population of Greenland is 59,
827 people. They are called Greenlanders and the majority religion is
Evangelical Lutheran. Their languages include Eskimo dialects, Danish, and
Greenlandic (An Inuit dialect.). The age structure is 0-14 years –26%; 15-64
– 68%; 65-? – 6%. The total life expectancy is male –65.98 years and
female – 74.24 years. The total life expectancy population is to 70 years. The
capitol of Greenland is Nuuk (Godthab). Its population is 12,483. It is the
largest and oldest Danish settlement on the island. It was founded in 1721.
Other settlements include Julianhåb (Qaqotorq), Frederekshåb and Narsaq on the
southern coast. With Thule on the northwestern coast, and Ammassalik on the
eastern coast. Greenland’s dependency status is very reliable on Denmark. It
has a self – governing overseas administrative division of Denmark since 1979.
The national holiday is the birthday of the Queen, April 16, 1940. Its legal
system is Danish, and the chief of state is Queen Margarethe 2 of Denmark
(represented by High Commissioner Gunnar Martens. The head of government is the
Prime Minister Jonathan Motzfieldt (elected by Parliament). The legislative
branch includes unicameral Parliament or Landsting. (31 members are elected by
popular vote on the basis of proportional representation to serve 4-year terms.)
The Judicial Branch includes the High Court or Landsret. The flag has two equal
horizontal bands of white (top) with a large disk slightly to the hoist side of
anter – the top half of the disk is red and the bottom is white. Greenland had
suffered negative economic growth in the early 1990s, since 1993 economy has
improved. Since 1990 Greenland has registered a foreign trade deficit following
the closure of the last remaining lead and zinc mines in 1989. Greenland is
critically dependent in fishing and fishing exports. Their export partners and
their percentages are Denmark 89%, Japan 5%, and United Kingdom 5%. Their
exports include 95% fish and fishing products. About half of the government
revenues come from grants from the Danish government. The labor force is about
24,500. Their agriculture products are forage crops, garden vegetables, sheep
and fish. The profit for their imports is 421,000,000. Their imports consist of
machinery and transport equipment 25%, manufactured goods 8%, food and live
animals 11%, petroleum products 6%. Their import partners are Denmark, Iceland,
Japan, Norway, United States, Germany, and Sweden. In June 1952, the Danish
government and private Danish, Swedish, and Canadian interests formed a company
to exploit deposits of zinc, lead, tungsten, and cryolite in Eastern Greenland.
The education of Greenland is obviously not as emphasized as many of the
country’s of the world. A university is located in Nuuk, and education is free
and compulsory for all children between the ages of seven and sixteen. Eric the
Red first explored Greenland. Father of Leif Ericson. There, Icelandic
settlements were established. By the early Fifteenth century, these settlements
had vanished, and all contact with Greenland was lost.

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