THE FIRST MINISTERIAL MEETING OF THE ARCTIC COUNCIL
SEPTEMBER 17-18, 1998
THE IQALUIT DECLARATION
The Arctic Council Iqaluit Ministerial Meeting was the first Meeting under the Arctic Council established on September 19, 1996, in Ottawa, Canada. The Declaration on the Establishment of the Arctic Council created the Council as a high level forum to provide a means for promoting cooperation, coordination and interaction among the Arctic States, with the involvement of the Arctic indigenous communities and other Arctic inhabitants on common Arctic issues.
WE, THE MINISTERS OF THE ARCTIC COUNTRIES HEREBY:
(The following is an excerpt from the Declaration.)
22. Endorse the Emergency, Prevention, Preparedness and Response (EPPR) Work Plan set forth in EPPR’s Strategic Plan of Action: ask the working group to initiate new projects and activities as indicated in the chapters: Activity Areas and Possible Future Activities of the Work Plan: and endorse the development of a Circumpolar Map of Resources at Risk from Oil Spills in the Arctic;
23. Welcome the Field Guide for Oil Spill Response in Arctic Waters, as a source of information on how to deal with oil spills in the Arctic: and take note of both the report of Phase I Analysis of Communication and Notification Systems in Place for Arctic Risks and the Revised Environmental Risk Analysis of Arctic Activities;
Report of Senior Arctic Council Officials to
THE ARCTIC COUNCIL
SEPTEMBER 17. 1998
IQALUIT NORTHWEST TERRITORIES (NUNAVUT)
(The following is a selective excerpt from the SAO report.)
Part II. ARCTIC COUNCIL PROGRESS AND FUTURE ACTIONS
D. EMERGENCY PREVENTION PREPAREDNESS AND RESPONSE (EPPR)
EPPR was established by the Declaration on the Protection of the Arctic Environment in June 1991 in Rovaniemi, Finland, under the AEPS to provide a framework for future cooperation in responding to threats of environmental emergencies.
In the Alta Declaration, the Ministers endorsed the following tasks under EPPR:
- The continuation of activities to identify means of improving emergency prevention, preparedness and response, in particular the development of an action plan for source control to meet risks identified, the development of a Field Guide for Arctic Oil Spill Response and a Strategic Plan of Action for this program area.
- The continued analysis and maintenance of a comprehensive overview regarding the adequacy and effectiveness of international agreements, measures and guidelines, and the analysis of accident notification systems to identify gaps and improve existing arrangements.
The EPPR working group has prepared a strategic Plan of Action as was requested at the Alta Ministerial Meeting. The plan consists of two parts: a Strategic Plan and a Work Plan. The Strategic Plan includes inter alia descriptions of the goal, mandate and objectives of the EPPR working group. The Work Plan contains a description of activity areas, information on existing projects and activities and possible future projects and activities. The Strategic Plan of Action is ANNEX 5 to this Report.
The EPPR working group has produced a Field Guide for Oil Spill Response in Antic Waters. The Field Guide provides practical information on how to deal with oil spills in the Arctic The publication will be available at the Iqaluit meeting.
The EPPR working group has also updated the Environmental Risk Analysis of Arctic Activities. This Report contains nationally collected information on activities which pose a major risk of accidental pollution in the Arctic area and a general quantification of the risks.
The United States of America and the Russian Federation have conducted a pilot study on Source Control Management and Prevention Strategies for High Risk Activities in the Arctic.
The Evaluation of the Adequacy of Existing International Agreements will be finalized in time for the 1999 EPPR working group meeting.
Based on the results of the pilot study on Source Control Management and Prevention Strategies for High Risk Activities in the Arctic, the EPPR working group decided to develop a more precise framework and guidelines for these site-specific studies.
The EPPR working group will conduct a new project on the Circumpolar Map of Resources at Risk Oils Spills in the Arctic. Norway is lead country and other Arctic countries are supporting the project financially or in-kind. The project will be carried out in close cooperation with the other Arctic working groups (AMAP, CAFF, and PAME).
Other on-going and future activities of the EPPR working group are described in Part 2 of the work plan in the draft Strategic Plan of Action for Emergency Prevention, Preparedness and Response Working Group.
PART III. IMPLEMENTATION OF ACTIVITIES
A. FINANCIAL and ADMINISTRATIVE MATTERS
Since the SAO meeting in Ottawa in 1997, Finland took over from Sweden as the overall lead country for the EPPR working group. The EPPR chair country has financed the secretariat support functions. Finland’s contribution to the EPPR secretariat function is approximately 150,000 FUI (30,000 USD).
The resources of the EPPR working group are limited and the projects are normally conducted by a lead country. When funding is needed, the costs have usually been divided among the member countries. Therefore, only a certain number of projects can be carried our simultaneously. The caste of the preparation of the Field Guide (125,000 CD) was divided among the Arctic countries. The same co-financing approach will be applied when preparing the circumpolar map and the estimated costs are 50,000 USD.