News Articles

  • 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

  • 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.

  • Picture of Magnus Rystedt, Managing Director NEFCO and Helle Lindegaard, Senior Legal Adviser NEFCO signing the NEFCO’s PSI Cooperation Agreement with the Russian Federation. Photo: NEFCO

    Russia allocates EUR 10M towards Pollution Prevention Initiatives

    On Tuesday 4 October 2011, the Russian Government signed an agreement allocating up to EUR 10 million to the implementation of Arctic Council priority projects.

    The funds will be channeled into the Arctic Council's Project Support Instrument (PSI), whose main purpose is to finance pollution-preventive initiatives in the Arctic region.  

  • Walrus observed in water by tourists in boat

    Marine biodiversity

    With a warming climate, marine biodiversity faces a number of challenges. In order to understand these changes in marine ecosystems, the Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna (CAFF) has responded in a number of ways.

  • Hand holding algae sample

    Community Based Monitoring

    The peoples inhabiting the various regions of the Arctic spend vast amounts of time on the land and at sea. Drawing on personal experience, information shared with others, and knowledge handed down through the generations, residents of the Arctic are able to recognize subtle environmental changes and offer insights into their causes.

  • Arctic Data

    A wealth of data is collected and assessed by the Arctic Council. The Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna (CAFF) and the Protection of the Arctic Marine Environment (PAME) working groups have developed a site to house the information.

  • CAFF logo


    The Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna's assessments provide vital descriptions of the current state of Arctic biodiversity. These efforts create scientific baselines which inform regional and global assessments, and provide a basis to guide future Arctic Council work.

  • Joseph Culp sampling freshwater benthos via kick net. Photo by Daryl Halliwell, Environment Canada


    Learn more about The Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna's Circumpolar Biodiversity Monitoring Program (CBMP), an international network of scientists, government agencies, Indigenous organizations and conservation groups working together to harmonize and integrate monitoring efforts and data collection.

  • Map of languages spoken in the Arctic

    Linguistic Diversity

    Language not only communicates, it defines culture, nature, history, humanity, and ancestry [1]. The indigenous languages of the Arctic have been formed and shaped in close contact with their environment. They are a valuable source of information and a wealth of knowledge on human interactions with nature is encoded in these languages. If a language is lost, a world is lost.

  • Photo by NEXTORS/flickr (Creative Commons) "Road from Luleå to Bensbyn"

    Next stop: Luleå

    The Swedish Chairmanship 2011-2013 

    From 12 May 2011 Sweden is chairing the Arctic Council. In its chairmanship programme, Sweden intends to focus on several issues such as prevention of oil emissions, climate change, resilience, biodiversity and environmental protection.

    Concerning the peoples in the Arctic, Sweden intends to listen to the views of the Arctic indigenous peoples, focus on languages and food safety, among

  • Cover of strategy with photo of a dog-sledding team

    Denmark, Greenland and Faroe Islands Adopt New Strategy for the Arctic for 2011-2020

    Monday 22 August 2011 Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lene Espersen, the Prime Minister of the Faroe Islands, Kaj Leo Johannesen, and Premier for the Government of Greenland, Kuupik Kleist, presented Denmark's strategy for the Arctic from 2011 to 2020. It has been elaborated by Denmark, Greenland and the Faroe Islands.

  • Cover of report featuring photo of iceberg

    Technical report of the Arctic Council Task Force on Short-Lived Climate Forcers

    The Task Force on Short-Lived Climate Forcers produced the "Progress Report and Recommendations for Ministers", which was a mayor deliverable during the Danish Chairmanship and approved by ministers at the Nuuk Ministerial Meeting on 12 May 2011.  

  • Some Permanent Participant delegates at the Nuuk Ministerial Meeting May 2011

    Sustainable development projects for Arctic communities

    The goal of the Sustainable Development Working Group (SDWG) is to propose and adopt steps to be taken by the Arctic States to advance sustainable development in the Arctic, including opportunities to protect and enhance the environment and the economies, culture and health of Indigenous Peoples and Arctic communities, as well as to improve the environmental, economic and social

  • EPPR Meets in Canada's Yukon Territory

    Canada hosted the meeting of the Emergency, Prevention, Preparedness and Response (EPPR) Working Group of the Arctic Council in Whitehorse, Yukon Territory which took place June 15-16, 2011.

  • Helicopter hovering above ship in the water

    Search and Rescue in the Arctic

    At the 2009 Ministerial Meeting in Tromsø, the Arctic Council decided to establish a Task Force with a mandate to develop an international instrument on cooperation on Search and Rescue operations in the Arctic. The Task Force, co-chaired by Ambassador Anton Vasiliev of the Russian Federation and Ambassador David Balton of the United States, met five times: in Washington (December 2009), in Moscow (February 2010), in Oslo (June 2010), in


    The Snow, Water, Ice and Permafrost in the Arctic  (SWIPA) Assessment was formally delivered by AMAP to the 7th Arctic Council Ministerial Meeting in Nuuk on 12 May 2011.

  • Cover of the AOR report with circumpolar map

    Arctic Ocean Review Project (AOR)

    AOR is a two-phased project lead by the working group PAME (Protection of the Arctic Marine Environment)and intends to analyze the status and trends in the Arctic marine environment (AME); review global and regional measures in place for the protection and sustainable use of the Arctic and provide advice to Arctic Council ministers in early 2013 as to how the management of the AME can be strengthened. Phase I (2009-2011) of the project