Let's follow our national motto and go to Canada's
other shore, from sea to sea, "a mari usque ad mare," from
Vancouver Island to Newfoundland.
Now we are looking out on the Atlantic, a still growing ocean
as the North American continent is moving away from Europe.
Canada's east coast is a "passive" continental margin,
which is widening, while our Pacific coast is an "active" continental
margin, overriding the ocean floor.
The Atlantic Ocean still is growing, some 180 million years
after it began to open, when our continent rifted away from
Europe and Africa. Northward, in the North Atlantic, rifting
started later. This rift, out of which the Atlantic eventually
grew, broke up a former supercontinent, called Pangaea. One
can say that eastern Newfoundland once was part of western
The Atlantic continental shelf is wide here, providing spawning
beds on the sea floor, and deep, sediment-filled basins below.
Some sediments are rich in oil and gas, and include the famous
Hibernia oil field.