27 September 2013When the Arctic Council’s Task Force for Action on Black Carbon and Methane (TFBCM) met in Whitehorse, Yukon on 17-19 September, the discussion focused on the health and climate benefits that would follow from reduction of black carbon and methane emissions in the Arctic. The Arctic Council’s Task Force for Action on Black Carbon and Methane (TFBCM) had its first meeting in Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada on September 17-19. During the meeting, the co-chairs (Ms. France Jacovella of Canada & Ambassador Annika Markovic of Sweden) underlined the significant benefits for both human health and climate that would follow a reduction of black carbon and methane emissions. They also highlighted the opportunity for the Arctic Council to show leadership on this important global issue. Established by the Kiruna Declaration, the TFBCM follows the comprehensive scientific and technical work that the Arctic Council has been doing over the last four years on short lived climate pollutants. The TFBCM’s mandate is to develop arrangements on actions to achieve enhanced black carbon and methane emissions reductions, and to report at the next Ministerial meeting in 2015. At the meeting in Whitehorse, Arctic Council member states and Permanent Participants undertook a broad scoping discussion covering the various tasks identified in the 2013 Senior Arctic Officials’ report to Ministers. With this discussion, the TFBCM is already making progress towards delivery on emission reductions. “The work of this task force is a key initiative under the Canadian chairmanship,” said co-chair France Jacovella of Canada. Jacovella underlined the importance for the Task Force of achieving concrete outcomes that will positively impact the lives of Northerners. Annika Markovic, the co-chair from Sweden, said: “The Task Force will work hard over the next 18 months to really deliver something that will make a difference at two levels: first, for climate and health on the ground in the Arctic; and second, for the climate as a whole.” Reports of previous Arctic Council Task Forces on Short-Lived Climate Forcers: Click here for the 2011 Report from the Task Force on Short-Lived Climate Forcers (PDF, 1.15 MB) Click here for the 2013 Report from the Task Force on Short-Lived Climate Forcers (PDF, 1.25 MB) Photo: Inga Vitola on Flickr.com - "After the Eruption". Click here for the link to the original photo.