The CBMP will work with members and partners to develop and promote best methods for monitoring Arctic biodiversity across the entire circumpolar region and publish Arctic Biodiversity Monitoring Plans related to the marine, freshwater, terrestrial and coastal environments. Coordinating these efforts involves identifying, strengthening and integrating the existing species-, ecosystem- and habitat-based networks with a number of site-based, regional and relevant global and "umbrella" networks.

Coordination through Expert Monitoring Groups (EMGs)

Photographing wildlife/ Photo: Carsten Egevang, Arc-Pic.comThe CBMP has established Expert Monitoring Groups (EMGs) representing major Arctic biomes - marinefreshwaterterrestrial and coastal - to lead the capacity buildingcoordination of monitoring, reporting, data management and communication activities. The CBMP office will provide the overall coordination of the EMGs, ensuring connectivity, linkages and compatibility.

These EMGs will design and implement on-the-ground monitoring and develop strategies to fill critical knowledge gaps. They will include and engage community, scientific and Indigenous experts. Each group will:

  • make use of existing monitoring and data, 
  • draw on expertise from inside and outside the Arctic and from other disciplines,
  • incorporate local and traditional knowledge and science based approaches,
  • develop standardized protocols and analytical tools,
  • use existing and emerging technologies such as remote sensing and genetic barcoding where appropriate.


Development of EMGs

Breakout group of the Terrestrial Expert Monitoring Group at their first workshop Each EMG will develop as follows:

  • CAFF country leads or co-leads will be identified to provide the sponsorship and development of each EMG.
  • Terms of reference will be developed to outline the EMG’s responsibilities, objectives and interaction with the CBMP office and the other EMGs.
  • Members of each EMG will be identified.
  • Background papers will be developed for each EMG, providing an overview of the main issues facing the biome in question, the current monitoring capacity, and suggested criteria for choosing biodiversity elements and parameters to monitor. Background papers will inventory and assess current monitoring programs allowing for knowledge gap identification and creation of strategies to fill gaps.
  • Each background paper will undergo a 30 day peer review process, with revisions completed prior to commencement of the workshop series.
  • Over the course of two workshops, the following issues will be addressed within the context of the background papers:
    • What key elements and parameters should be monitored for this biome? Why? What key information would each parameter provide?
    • What priority should be assigned to each parameter?
    • What, if any, monitoring or assessment has been or is being conducted that addresses these priority elements and parameters? Where/when? What organizations and networks are responsible for this monitoring?
    • What methods have been, are, or should be used (including novel technologies)?
    • At what scale and frequency should each parameter be monitored (e.g., pan-Arctic vs. regional vs. local, seasonal vs. annual vs. longer periods)?
    • Where and when should each parameter be monitored?
    • What research and monitoring networks will be involved in the monitoring?
  • Answers will guide the development of Arctic Biodiversity Monitoring Plans. Regional working groups (inter-agency/network teams) will be responsible for adopting and implementing the Integrated Monitoring Plans in specific regions of the Arctic.
  • Each EMG will then be re-organized into a smaller ‘steering group’ which will facilitate ongoing communication amongst and between the regional working groups implementing the integrated monitoring plans and the CBMP office.



Freshwater Steering Group (FSG)

Freshwater Steering Group. Photo: Kári Fannar Lárusson

Terrestrial Steering Group (TSG)

Terrestrial Steering Group. Photo: Bjarni Eiriksson

Marine Steering Group (MSG)

CBMP Marine group. Photo: Fernando Ugarte

Arctic States

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Permanent Participants

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