Thematic Work

News Articles

  • Photo: A visit to the Gällivare iron-ore mine Malmberget was included in the meeting schedule.

    SDWG Meeting in Gällivare

    The Sustainable Development Working Group (SDWG) meeting took place in Gällivare in Northern Sweden February 14-15. A total of 34 representatives from the Member states, Permanent Participants, PAME and AMAP Working Groups, and Observers attended the meeting.

  • Photo: Arctic parliamentarians meet in Stockholm. At the table, from left: Morten Höglund, Norwegian parliamentarian and Chair of SCPAR, Sweden’s Minister for Foreign Affairs Carl Bildt and Gustaf Lind, Sweden’s Arctic Ambassador.

    SCPAR meeting in Stockholm on February 14 2012

    On 14 February 2012 the Standing Committee of Parliamentarians of the Arctic Region (SCPAR) met at the Riksdag Building in Stockholm to discuss Arctic cooperation. Minister for Foreign Affairs Carl Bildt gave a speech during the meeting in view of Sweden’s Chairmanship of the Arctic Council in 2011–2013.

  • Photo by Arctic Council. Gällivare train station taken in February 2012.

    Arctic Council Sustainable Development Working Group to meet in Gällivare

    On 14–15 February, the Arctic Council Sustainable Development Working Group will meet in Gällivare. The meeting is being organised under the Swedish Chairmanship of the Arctic Council, which lasts until 2013. Around 30 representatives of the eight member states, indigenous peoples and observer states will take part.

  • The CBMP receives GEO BON endorsement

    The Circumpolar Biodiversity Monitoring Program (CBMP), the cornerstone program of the  Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna (CAFF) working group, received official endorsement from the Group on Earth Observations Biodiversity Observation Network (GEO BON) in January 2012. CBMP now belongs to the GEO BON regional network Arctic-BON. Arctic-BON is one of five regional networks. The other four are AP BON (which includes ASEAN CB), F-BON (France/ECOSOPE), EBONE (Europe), and J-BON (Japan).

  • Saami flag in red, green, yellow, and blue

    Saami National Day Celebrations

    The 6th of February is the Saami National Day which is celebrated in Norway, Sweden, Finland and Russia, the four countries where the indigenous Saami people live today. The Saami National Day has been celebrated since 1993. The date, February 6, was chosen to commemorate the first Saami congress which was held in Trondheim, Norway in 1917.

  • Man with breathing mas removing chemicals

    First meeting of IPCAP

    IPCAP PSG gathered for its first meeting on November 7 in Luleå, Sweden. Permanent participant organisations Aleut International Association (AIA), Russian Indigenous Peoples Organisation (RAIPON), Sami Council, Indigenous Peoples Secretariat (IPS), Arctic Council secretariat and country representatives from Finland, Norway, Sweden and USA participated in the meeting. The group discussed its Terms of Reference and mandate. The aim of the PSG is both to ensure the Indigenous Peoples’ concerns are taken into account in other Arctic Council projects and to facilitate development of projects addressing the exposure to and impacts of contaminants in the indigenous communities. The PSG will elect two co-chairs, one chosen by the PPs and one by the Arctic Member States.

  • Photo: The Swedish Museum of Natural History is a major research institute which houses collections containing specimens collected in the 18th century and onwards. Photo by Mikael Axelsson.

    SAO meeting at Swedish Museum of Natural History

    The Swedish Chairmanship of the Arctic Council is is arranging the first Senior Arctic Officials (SAO) meeting of the year at the Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm in March. The Chairmanship in cooperation with the museum hope to arouse interest in nature and natural sciences, the environment, conservation and biodiversity. Interests that chime well with the activities of the Arctic Council.

  • Photo from Arctic Frontiers. Photo by Arctic council

    Arctic Frontiers a useful resource for the working groups

    The sixth annual Arctic Frontiers conference was held January 22-27 in Tromsø, Norway. This year's theme was Energies of the High North and the title of the conference was Polar Might. The conference was held at the University of Tromsø.

  • SDWG Chair Mikael Anzén

    Arctic environment requires responsible corporate practices

    As the Arctic becomes an interesting place for business actors to conduct operations, the strains on this sensitive region are increasing. The Swedish Chairmanship of the Arctic Council is organizing a workshop in Stockholm on 26–27 January to determine whether the OECD guidelines on corporate social responsibility (CSR) are adequate for the Arctic region.

  • Arctic Council logo with circumpolar map and arctic fox

    Arctic Council drafts communication strategy

    The first draft of the Arctic Council communication strategy will soon be sent to a contact group for evaluation.The draft of the communication strategy is based on groundwork done by the Arctic Council Communication and Outreach group which was active during the period 2010-2011. The group was lead by Giles Norman from Canada who did extensive surveys with representatives from the member states, permanent participants, and working groups to evaluate the communication needs of the Arctic Council. This work resulted in the Arctic Council Communications and Outreach Guidelines which were approved in 2011.

  • Cover of report with ice crystal and drop of mercury

    Mercury in the Arctic

    The Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme (AMAP) recently published a detailed scientific assessment on mercury in the Arctic, updating previous assessments made in 1998 and 2004.

  • COP 17 logo, globe with tree growing out of it

    Arctic States call for measures to reduce emissions

    The Arctic States call for powerful measures to reduce emissions: “The fight against climate change is an imperative common challenge for the international community and requires immediate global measures. To highlight the effects of global warming in the Arctic, Sweden, which holds the chairmanship of the Arctic Council, will today host a seminar in the margins of the climate conference.”

  • Photo: JohnConnell on Flickr.com, Durban International Convention Centre.

    Arctic – A Messenger for Global Change

    The Swedish Chairmanship of the Arctic Council, along with the Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme (AMAP) and Greenland, will present a side event on current environmental trends in the Arctic during the COP17/CMP7 United Nations Climate Change Conference held in Durban, South Africa.

  • Photo, barrel dumps in the Arctic. Photo provided by IPCAP.

    New Arctic Contaminants Project

    Industrial development of the Arctic has been accompanied by waste accumulation, especially in the vicinity of indigenous villages. This represents a growing threat to safety and health of the Arctic people who – due to traditional living conditions – are exposed to higher levels of contamination in the air, water, soil and their food supply.

  • Arctic Trends and the ABA

    The Arctic Biodiversity Assessment (ABA) was endorsed by the Arctic Council in 2006. The aims of the ABA are to provide a much needed description of the current state of the Arctic’s ecosystems and biodiversity, create a baseline for use in global and regional assessments of biodiversity, and provide a basis to inform and guide future Arctic Council work.

  • Walrus Photo by Peter Prokosch / GRID-Arendal

    CAFF Works with the CBD on Arctic biodiversity

     In a guest article for the Biodiversity Policy and Practice website, Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna (CAFF) working group Executive Secretary Tom Barry outlines the work that CAFF is doing to support Arctic biodiversity. As Barry states in his article, some of this work is being done in conjunction with the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD)

  • Picture: About 160 people attended the SAO meeting in Luleå

    Successful Meeting in Luleå

    The first SAO meeting organized under the Swedish Chairmanship was a success. Approximately 160 people attended the meeting which took place at the Luleå Technical University 8-9 November. Meeting participants were welcomed on Tuesday morning by a personal video greeting from Sweden's Minister for Foreign Affairs Carl Bildt. Arctic Council Chair Gustaf Lind then opened the meeting with general information about the goals and working procedures for the Swedish Chairmanship period.

  • Photo of an Arctic fox by UNEP-GRID Arendal, Lawrence Hislop

    CAFF Event on Arctic Biodiversity

    The Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna (CAFF), the biodiversity working group of the Arctic Council, invites you to attend a special side event discussing THE VIEW FROM UP HERE: ARCTIC BIODIVERSITY IN A WARMING WORLD at the upcoming 15th meeting of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice (SBSTTA) of the Convention of Biological Diversity (CBD), in Montreal, Canada.

  • AMAP Working Group met in Moscow

    Russia hosted the 25th meeting of the Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme (AMAP) Working Group of the Arctic Council in Moscow October 3-5, 2011.

  • rescuer in diving suit being lowered to water from helicopter

    First Arctic Council SAR exercise in Whitehorse, Canada

    The first Arctic Council Search and Rescue exercise took place October 4-6, 2011 in Whitehorse, Yukon. 80 delegates and observers from the eight Arctic Council member states were welcomed by Lieutenant General Walter Semianiw, Commander Canada Command and host of the international exercise.