Sustainable Arctic in the context of environmental and socio-economic changes
Information, Programme and Registration
Brussels, 25 March 2019, 13-18
Venue: Martin’s Hotel EU Brussels, Bvrd Charlemagne 80
For REGISTRATION, click here.
Our aim is to facilitate dialogue among all participants without breaking the seminar into smaller groups. For that reason, we would like to keep the total numer of participants below 60. We kindly ask maximum two persons from any given organization to register for the event (with the exception of the EU institutions). The registration will be closed when the maximum number of participants is reached.
The Information and Initial Programme are also available in the INFORMATION NOTE (PDF)
Brussels, 25 March 2019
13:00 Welcoming words
13:15 Session 1 “Transition in the Arctic”
14:30 Coffee Break
15:00 Session 2 “Sustainable green and blue growth”
16:15 Coffee Break
16:40 Session 3 “Digital solutions”
17:55 Closing words
18:00 Light cocktail reception
The detailed programme with the list of speakers as well as a short background paper presenting the themes of the seminar will be available around three weeks before the seminar and communicated to all registered participants.
THE OUTLINE OF SESSIONS
Session 1: Transition in the Arctic: inclusive mitigation and transformation towards low-carbon economy.
The Arctic region is considered a symbol of global climate change, as the Arctic warms two-to-three times faster than the global average. Arctic communities are among the earliest to feel the impacts of the warming planet and are among those expected to face especially difficult challenges in the future. At the same time, climate policies related to energy, transport, transition to low-carbon economy, can have disproportional implications for Arctic regions, compared to southern urban centres. These regions are characterized by remoteness, sparse population, and high dependence on extractive industries. Many locations rely on fossil fuels for transport, energy and heating, often above national average. What are the best strategies to facilitate just transition for Arctic societies without adversely affecting national climate ambitions? How to balance Arctic regions’ responsibility for global climate with the socio-economic sustainability of Arctic communities? The session will discuss what investments would be needed to support just transition and mitigation actions in the Arctic? The cases of renewable energy projects and successfully implemented sustainable solutions will be highlighted. The session will also touch upon the concerns of Arctic communities related to the implementation of climate policies in sparsely populated Arctic regions.
Session 2: Sustainable green and blue growth in the Arctic?
Policymakers and private sector see green and blue growth as key strategies towards developing Arctic regions, while at the same time promoting sustainability. How to define what is truly sustainable, and which activities and initiatives genuinely constitute examples of and contribute to green and blue growth? Moreover, Arctic resource extraction could, in principle, contribute to global sustainability and green growth, supporting low-carbon transition via renewable energy production and minerals necessary for the proliferation of green technologies. However, any resource extraction will have impacts on Arctic cultures, livelihoods and biodiversity. The session will bring together local and global perspectives on green and blue growth and will discuss the ways how sustainability is defined in different contexts.
Session 3: Digital solutions to navigate Arctic change
Arctic regions are characterized by remoteness, sparse population, harsh climate and long distances. While not without challenges and with major difference between locations, the connectivity is gradually improving across the Arctic and in particular in the European Arctic. Digitalization permeates every aspect of life in the North and every business sector. What are the digital solutions that support Arctic peoples, communities, governments and businesses to manage environmental and socio-economic changes? What possibilities are there in the near future?
You may consult the Joint Communication on an integrated EU policy for the Arctic (2016)
The Dialogue Seminar is being organised under the EU Arctic Policy Assessment project, which is financed by the European Union. It is co-convened by the European External Action Service and the European Commission (Service for Foreign Policy Instruments) with the support of the contractor, Arctic Centre of the University of Lapland (Finland) together with project partners (Alfred-Wegener-Institute, Germany and Arctic Portal, Iceland).
If you have any questions, please contact us at EUAPA(at)ulapland.fi