For immediate release (April 24, 2015) Iqaluit, Canada 

Actions for Arctic Biodiversity: Implementing the Recommendations of the Arctic Biodiversity Assessment 2013-2021 will be the defining guide for how the Arctic Council addresses the pressures facing the Arctic’s living resources.

“This is a massive accomplishment for us and for Arctic wildlife," says Tom Barry, Executive Secretary of the Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna (CAFF), the biodiversity working group of the Arctic Council. "We have set in motion a comprehensive plan as to how CAFF, the Arctic Council and the wider global community can ensure we conserve Arctic species and ecosystems for future generations.”

Actions for Arctic Biodiversity provides a path forward to implement complex and interconnected recommendations of the Arctic Biodiversity Assessment, approved by the Arctic Council Ministers in 2013 at the start of the Canadian chairmanship period of the Arctic Council. Actions to implement 10 of the 17 recommendations have already since then. Actions to address all recommendations will be underway within four years. While previously initiated actions will continue, additional focus will be on:

Phase 1, 2013-2015

  • short-lived climate forcers, ecosystem-based management, mainstreaming biodiversity, addressing stressors on biodiversity, in particular oil spills, stressors on migratory species, improving knowledge and public awareness, in particular, improving access to data, integrating traditional knowledge, evaluating ecosystem services and communication and outreach tools, and safeguarding important marine areas

Phase 2: 2015-2017

  • mainstreaming biodiversity, reducing stressors on migratory birds, ecosystem services evaluation and communications and outreach, adaptation to climate change, addressing stressors on biodiversity, in particular, migratory species, invasive species and pollution, safeguarding critical areas and improving knowledge and public awareness, in particular, monitoring and traditional and local knowledge and indicator development

Phase 3: 2017-2019

  • safeguarding biodiversity under changing conditions, cumulative effects, improving knowledge and public awareness including contributing to the Convention on Biological Diversity assessment on achievement of the United Nations’ Aichi Biodiversity Targets and convening the second Arctic Biodiversity Congress.

Phase 4: 2019-2021

  • completing projects, implementing strategies and plans developed in early phases, evaluating progress, and designing follow-up.

This eight-year Action Plan has been informed by the results of the Arctic Biodiversity Congress, the largest event in the history of the Arctic Council, and discussions with Arctic Council countries, Permanent Participants, Working Groups, Task Forces, and Observers. 


Access all CAFF Arctic Council Ministerial Deliverables here



Tom Barry, +354 861-9824, tom EP_AT caff EP_DOT is

Executive Secretary, Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna


Courtney Price, +354 821-3609, courtney EP_AT caff EP_DOT is

Communications Officer, Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna  

The Arctic Council's Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna and the Government of Yukon welcome participants to a public event in Whitehorse, Canada on February 12 at 7:30-8:30 p.m. at the Yukon Beringia Interpretive Centre.

A question and answer period will follow presentations and audience discussion on:

  • Arctic biodiversity: from assessment to action
  • Tracking change in Arctic ecosystems: monitoring efforts
  • Arctic birds: conserving migratory birds and protecting Arctic lifestyles
  • Harnessing the power of data to improve knowledge

The Association of Polar Early Career Scientists (APECS) and Conservation of the Arctic Flora and Fauna (CAFF) are looking for an early career researcher to take part in an upcoming CAFF project, the Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB) for the Arctic Scoping Study

We are looking for an early career Arctic researcher who is interested in the fields of ecosystem services, natural capital, and socio-economic benefits of biodiversity. We are particularly looking for a researcher with a strong interest in Arctic governance in relation to ecosystem science.

The first stage of the project is to help in the early stages of this study through attendance at a technical workshop in Reykjavik, May 13-14, 2014. CAFF will cover the costs for attendance at the meeting. The role of the APECS representative at the workshop would be to contribute to reviewing progress on the project and setting directions for further work. A secondary role in helping the project coordinator take notes during discussions. This is a workshop of 20 to 25 participants only.

Post workshop CAFF and the APECS representative will work together to determine your role following the workshop, and we would expect you to bring your ideas on this to the workshop. Potential involvement could include reviewing and synthesizing information on international, national or regional initiatives that could inform this scoping study, being a contributing author to the project report, synthesizing and analyzing the results of our web-based questionnaire, and/or undertaking to compile, analyze and report on a dataset or two (related to Arctic ecosystem services) as a case study. Further work on the project would need to be done over the late spring/summer period, as the first draft of the project report is due September 30, 2014.

Although no funds are available to pay for the time spent on the project you will receive the benefits of working with a diverse, keen, engaged group of professionals, and you will have an opportunity to contribute to a circumpolar project that is aimed at raising the profile of ecosystem services in all areas of decision-making. All contributions will be fully recognized in the final report, which will be tabled with Arctic Council.

If you are interested please send a CV, a one page summary of your work and how it fits with the projects overall themes to  info EP_AT apecs EP_DOT is by April 19th, 2014. As this project is mutli-year we expect applicants to commit to the completion of this project.

If you have any questions, please contact APECS at:  info EP_AT apecs EP_DOT is.



The Norwegian Polar Institute (NPI) is hosting a symposium focussed on assessing species vulnerability in the lead up to the Arctic Biodiversity Congress

The NPI's "Symposium: assessing vulnerability of flora and fauna in polar areas" will occur November 3-4, 2014, Results from this event will be presented at the Arctic Biodiversity Congress one month later on December 2-4, 2014.

For more information, please contact Dag Vongraven, NPI





The Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna (CAFF), the biodiversity Working Group of the Arctic Council, is seeking individuals and organizations to provide presentations, organize sessions and submit posters that will encourage a dialogue on Arctic biodiversity among scientists, indigenous peoples, policy makers, government officials, northerners and industry representatives at the Arctic Biodiversity Congress.

Submit via the online submission system

The Arctic Biodiversity Congress will be held in Trondheim, Norway on December 2-4, 2014. The purpose of the Congress is to promote the conservation and sustainable use of Arctic biodiversity through dialogue among scientists, policy-makers, government officials, indigenous peoples, industry and civil society. The Congress is also a key response to the Arctic Biodiversity Assessment (ABA).

Congress Themes:

  1. Climate change: Arctic biodiversity, resilience and adaptation
  2. Mainstreaming biodiversity: linking Arctic ecosystems to society
  3. Understanding cumulative effects and managing impacts on biodiversity

Learn more about the Arctic Biodiversity Congress program and register now.


Thank you for your interest in participating in and contributing to the Arctic Biodiversity Congress!

Please contact  caff EP_AT caff EP_DOT is if you have any questions.

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