Environmental and funding concerns are adding years to the construction of an Arctic naval port considered crucial to enforcing Canadian control of the Northwest Passage.
The Nanisivik port in Nunavut was originally supposed to be at least partially up and running by next summer, following a promise made by Prime Minister Stephen Harper in 2007.
But no construction is planned for this summer and defence officials admit that the refuelling station, intended to give the navy a permanent presence at the eastern gate of the contested passage, won't be operating for years.
"Construction work at the Nanisivik Naval Facility will begin in 2013," said a defence department spokesman in an email. "It is forecasted that the (facility) will be operational in 2016."