20 January 2012 - the first meeting of the Arctic NGO forum took place in Arendal, Norway, where participating organisations concerned with Arctic environmental issues met to help shape the Forum's goals and objectives, and its work, over the coming years.
The two-day meeting included the Arctic Alliance, Bellona Foundation, International Polar Foundation, Indigenous Peoples Secretariat, Friends of the Earth, Greenpeace, University of the Arctic, and Wetlands International.
The Forum, which will be a platform for civil society dialogue, collaboration and action on Arctic issues, has decided on a set of objectives, which are to:
Promote better cooperation among NGOs to increase their effectiveness and influence with decision-makers, both public and private;
Increase NGOs’ ability to use scarce resources in Arctic fora by sharing knowledge and information, and building capacity;
Create opportunities for understanding and dialogue between NGOs and Indigenous and local people in the Arctic;
Raise awareness about the threats to the Arctic environment and their potential solutions; and
Identify emerging issues and place them on the public agenda.
Forum participants meet in the evening
of Day 1 to discuss further.
Credit: Bjorn Alfthan
The forum will meet regularly and will organise workshops with wider challenges to address the critical challenges facing the Arctic. The focus of the first workshop is expected to be on the issue of oil and gas exploration and production in the Arctic, set for mid to late 2012.
For further information: Access the Forum Statement and 1st Meeting Report (weblink)
Contact the Forum facilitators: John Crump (firstname.lastname@example.org, +1 613 255 3840), Kathrine Johnsen (email@example.com, +47 412 345 81)