• 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.

  • Arctic Council Ministers meet, pass Chairmanship from Finland to Iceland, Arctic States conclude Arctic Council Ministerial meeting by signing a joint statement

    At the 11th Arctic Council Ministerial meeting in Rovaniemi, Finland, Ministers of the eight Arctic States, leaders from the six indigenous Permanent Participant organizations and the Chairs of the six Working Groups of the Arctic Council met to mark the passing of the Chairmanship from Finland to Iceland. In the Rovaniemi Joint Ministerial Statement, the Arctic States reaffirmed the Council’s commitment to maintain the Arctic as a region of peace, stability and constructive cooperation. Additionally, Finland’s Foreign Minister Timo Soini released a Chair’s statement, summarizing the Council’s achievements and giving guidance for the next two years. The International Maritime Organization was accredited as a new Observer.

  • The Rovaniemi Joint Ministerial Statement

    Read the Rovaniemi Joint Ministerial Statement signed by all eight Foreign Ministers at the 11th Arctic Council Ministerial meeting in Rovaniemi, Finland

  • The Chair's Statement from the Arctic Council Ministerial meeting in Rovaniemi

    Read the Chair's statement from 11th Arctic Council Ministerial meeting in Rovaniemi, Finland, presented by Finland’s Foreign Minister Timo Soini. 

  • Watch the Ministerial meeting live

    On May 7 2019 from 10:30 am - 12:30 pm (GMT+3) Finland will host the 11th Arctic Council Ministerial meeting in Rovaniemi, Finland.

    Ministers 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. The Arctic States will be joined by delegations from the Council's indigenous Permanent Participant organizations, the Chairs of the six Working Groups, and Observers. The Ministerial is held in the Lappi Areena in Rovaniemi, Finland.

    To watch the event live, click here.

  • The Arctic Council signs Memorandum of Understanding with Arctic Economic Council

    The Arctic Council signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Arctic Economic Council in Rovaniemi, Finland, today. The aim of the MoU is to provide a framework for cooperation and to facilitate collaboration between the Arctic Council and the Arctic Economic Council. The MoU was signed by Nina Buvang Vaaja, Director of the Arctic Council Secretariat, and Anu Fredrikson, Director of the Arctic Economic Council Secretariat.

  • The common solutions explored

    A preview on the 11th Arctic Council Ministerial meeting and its deliverables

  • Arctic Council accepts IAIA Global Award

    The Arctic Council is the recipient of the 2019 Global Award of the International Association for Impact Assessment (IAIA). Today, representatives of the Finnish Ministry of Environment accepted the prize on behalf of the Finnish Chairmanship of the Arctic Council at IAIA’s  39th Annual Conference in Brisbane, Australia.

  • We got the recognition we called for – An interview with Gunn-Britt Retter

    Gunn-Britt Retter is the Head of the Arctic and Environment Unit of the Saami Council – and one of the delegates that has attended most Ministerial meetings. In this interview, Gunn-Britt speaks about the role of Permanent Participants at Ministerial meetings and beyond, reflects on changes she has seen over the years, and her hopes for an equal share of involvement for all Permanent Participants.

  • The final stretch

    Ambassador Aleksi Härkönen, Chair of the Senior Arctic Officials speaks about the preparations for the Ministerial meeting in Rovaniemi, which will conclude the Finnish Chairmanship in May. He also goes into some of the common solutions the Arctic Council has explored during Finland’s two-year term.

  • 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.

  • Arctic Council receives IAIA 2019 Global Award

    The Arctic Council is the recipient of the 2019 Global Award of the International Association for Impact Assessment (IAIA). The award is handed out annually and recognizes individuals or institutions that have emerged as leaders in environmental assessments. The IAIA Award Committee honors the Arctic Council’s promotion of sustainable development and environmental protection and emphasizes the Finnish Chairmanship’s proposal for an Arctic environmental impact assessment tool. The award will the handed out in Brisbane shortly before the Ministerial meeting in May.

  • A Stamp of Approval

    Senior Arctic Officials approve deliverables for the upcoming Ministerial meeting.