Press Room

News Releases

  • Interview with SDWG Chair Stefán Skjaldarson

    Stefán Skjaldarson is the new Chair of the Sustainable Development Working Group (SDWG). Growing up in one of the most remote parts of northeast Iceland, he got to know the scarcities of an Arctic childhood until education and eventually his work in the Foreign Service of Iceland drew him out into the world. Chairing SDWG is a return to the Arctic Council for Stefán Skjaldarson. He was involved in the Rovaniemi Process – a forerunner of today’s Council – and took part in the preparatory meetings for establishing the Arctic Council. In this brief interview, he speaks about experiences and inspiration guiding his work for SDWG over the coming years.

  • First meeting during Iceland's Arctic Council Chairmanship

    On 18-19 June 2019, Arctic Council delegates gathered in Reykjanesbær, Iceland, for the first Senior Arctic Officials’ executive meeting during the Chairmanship of Iceland (2019-2021). Amongst other things, the Senior Arctic Officials, joined by the Permanent Participants and representatives of the Council’s Working Groups, discussed initiatives falling under Iceland’s priority themes.

  • Towards an international symposium on plastics in the Arctic

    In April 2020, the Icelandic government and the Nordic Council of Ministers will host an International Symposium on the Threat of Plastics to the Arctic and Sub-Arctic Marine Environment. The aim of the symposium is to gather the best available knowledge on plastics in the Arctic and to find solutions for tackling the issue. Registration is already possible and the call for abstracts will open on 1 July 2019.

  • Interview with ACAP Chair Inger Johanne Wiese

    Inger Johanne Wiese is the new Chair of the Arctic Contaminants Action Program (ACAP). She works as senior advisor at the Ministry of Climate and Environment Norway in the Department for National Marine Affairs and Pollution Control. In this brief interview, she talks about her background, ACAP’s mandate and projects we should keep an eye on over the next two years.

  • Interview with EPPR Chair Peter Holst-Andersen

    Peter Holst-Andersen is the Chair of the Emergency Prevention, Preparedness and Response (EPPR) Working Group. He is the only Working Group Chair remaining in his position after Iceland has assumed the Chairmanship of the Arctic Council. We revisited some statements he made as he first became EPPR Chair (read his first interview) and asked him for his ambitions and personal favorites.

  • Interview with AMAP Chair Anders Turesson

    Anders Turesson is the new Chair of the Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme (AMAP). He works at the Swedish Ministry of Environment. While chairing the Arctic Council Working Group, he will also continue to work on climate change related issue back in Stockholm. Get to know Anders and learn more about his interests in and ambitions for AMAP.

  • diagram of the Arctic Council

    The 11th Arctic Council Ministerial meeting

    On May 7, Finland will host the 11th Arctic Council Ministerial Meeting in Rovaniemi. Minister-level representatives from the eight Arctic States will convene to review and approve work completed under the two-year Finnish Chairmanship to improve sustainable development and environmental protection in the Arctic.

  • Connectivity – a lifeline for human activities

    There is more to connectivity than mobile phone coverage. Access to broadband for example facilitates e-learning for children and adults in remote communities and enables the development of digital health and social services. The Finnish Chairmanship program speaks of well-functioning communication networks and services as a lifeline for human activities and as a prerequisite for economic development in the Arctic.

  • Meteorological cooperation – A success story

    One of the Finnish priority areas that Ambassador Aleksi Härkönen, Chair of the Senior Arctic Officials, emphasizes as a success, is meteorological cooperation. “Already now we could say that we have achieved a breakthrough when the WMO and national meteorological institutes decided to actively contribute to meteorological cooperation in the Arctic.” In its Chairmanship program, Finland emphasized the need for enhancing both meteorological and oceanographic cooperation across the Arctic States. This would improve public safety, benefit international shipping and air traffic, and enhance Arctic climate science.

  • Environmental protection – An award-winning effort

    Environmental protection lies at the core of the Arctic Council – ever since its establishment. In the Council’s founding document, the Ottawa declaration, the eight Arctic States affirmed their commitment to protect the Arctic environment and healthy ecosystems, to maintain Arctic biodiversity, to conserve and enable a sustainable use of natural resources.

  • A Stamp of Approval

    Senior Arctic Officials approve deliverables for the upcoming Ministerial meeting.

  • Fast forward through the Chairmanship

    Fourth Senior Arctic Officials’ meeting during Finland’s Chairmanship of the Arctic Council sums up achievements of the past two years.

  • Arctic Council at COP24: Curbing black carbon emissions for health and Arctic climate benefits

    The Arctic Council together with Finland hosted an official side event "Curbing black carbon emissions for health and Arctic climate benefits" at COP24 in Katowice, Poland, Monday 10 December, 18:30 – 20:00.

  • Arctic Council meeting focuses on biodiversity in the Arctic

    At the meeting just concluded in Rovaniemi, Finland, the Arctic Council focused its discussions on Arctic biodiversity and received updates from all the Council’s subsidiary bodies on their ongoing work.

  • Senior Arctic Officials gather for third meeting during Finland’s Chairmanship of the Arctic Council

    On 1-2 November 2018, the Arctic Council will gather in Rovaniemi, Finland for the third Senior Arctic Officials’ meeting held during the Chairmanship of Finland (2017-2019).

  • Photo of Minister Kimmo Tiilikainen

    Arctic Council meeting of Environment Ministers ends with talks about future cooperation

    The Arctic Environment Ministers’ meeting held in Rovaniemi 11-12 October ended with discussions about cooperation in addressing climate change, protecting biodiversity and preventing pollution in the Arctic region. The two-day meeting brought together ministers and high-level representatives from the eight Arctic Council States and from six Permanent Participants representing the indigenous peoples of the Arctic. The Observer countries and organizations of the Arctic Council had also been invited.

  • Arctic Environment Ministers' meeting: Exploring common solutions for the Arctic environment

    The Finnish Chairmanship is organizing an Arctic Environment Ministers’ meeting (AEMM) in Rovaniemi, Finland, 11-12 October 2018. The meeting will gather the Ministers of the Environment of the eight Arctic States, six indigenous Permanent Participant organizations, Arctic Council’s six Working Groups, as well as Arctic Council Observers. The meeting will be chaired by Mr. Kimmo Tiilikainen, Minister of the Environment, Energy and Housing of Finland.

  • Arctic Resilience Forum: Sharing best-practices for improving Arctic resilience

    The Arctic Resilience Forum held in Rovaniemi, Finland, 10-11 September gathered around 100 Arctic experts, policymakers, and various key stakeholders. The purpose of the event was to strengthen cooperation on work related to resilience to the impacts of climate change and to present and discuss resilience best-practices from Arctic Council Working Groups’ and other stakeholder’s projects.

  • Event: Arctic Resilience Forum, 10-11 September 2018

    The Arctic Resilience Forum, an international conference organised by Finland’s Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry in Rovaniemi on 10–11 September 2018, seeks to develop the resilience of the Arctic region to climate change.

  • First-ever Arctic Council side event at UN's High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development

    In a panel held at the High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development in New York, several speakers highlighted the unique model of the Arctic Council in supporting science diplomacy, bringing governments, indigenous peoples, and the scientific community together in support of sustainable development in the region.