Calls for new Arctic Chair Norway to act on environment protection

Ahead of Norway taking up the two-year Chairmanship of the Arctic Council on May 11th, the Clean Arctic Alliance has published an open letter to the incoming chair, Norway’s Arctic Ambassador Morten Høglund, containing recommendations for Norway’s priorities during its chairmanship, that focused around the protection of the Arctic environment, promotion of climate and green energy solutions, support for people in the Arctic and the development of a stronger Arctic Council.

The letter emphasizes the urgent need for action to reduce black carbon emissions from ships operating in and near to the Arctic. Recent analysis by the International Council on Clean Transportation shows that black carbon emissions from shipping in Arctic waters has doubled between 2015 and 2021, despite efforts by Arctic States and other sectors to fulfil the Arctic Council’s aspirational goal to reduce black carbon emissions by 25 – 33% by 2025.

“During its two-year Chairmanship of the Arctic Council, the Clean Arctic Alliance calls on Norway to focus on the safeguarding of the Arctic environment and sustainable development in the Arctic, with a special emphasis on new measures for mitigating the impacts of Arctic shipping, which will minimize emissions of greenhouse gas emissions, including black carbon and methane, pollution discharges, reduce the risk of oil spills, and address underwater radiated noise” said Dr Sian Prior, Lead Advisor to the Clean Arctic Alliance.  

“Norway has the opportunity to provide global leadership for a region of the world already experiencing extreme temperature changes year-round, record low summer sea ice extent and the opening of Arctic sea routes earlier in the year.”

Photo credit: iStock/Travel Trend

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