Arctic Council upgrade

The Arctic Journal posted an article titled, “Arctic Council upgrade.” The article reads in part as follows;

“As the Arctic Council celebrates its 20th anniversary, we acknowledge its many positive scientific and policy-shaping accomplishments and look to greater Arctic cooperation to govern this unique region of the planet for sustainability. The rapid and significant changes in the Arctic, from melting ice to economic development have drawn global attention to the region, and to the Arctic Council as the central mechanism for responding to these changes.

The Arctic Council has a history of making and shaping policy. The ministers of Arctic countries who assemble every two years have approved and built on recommendations flowing from the council’s working groups. The council’s Achilles’ heel has been the lack of a co-ordinated approach to implementation at a national level and fragmented co-ordination at the council level.

For many council recommendations, there has been no monitoring or reporting of results, and therefore no ability to assess the adequacy of policy or management approaches that should have flowed from the ministerial direction. There have been some positive steps toward implementation over the past few years. Progress on following up recommendations from the Arctic Marine Shipping Assessment has been monitored, and an action plan developed for the Arctic Biodiversity Assessment. The Arctic Council established and developed a tracking tool to monitor progress on council projects.”

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