Biodiversity & Ecosystem Management

“Increasing temperatures are already showing many effects on Arctic biodiversity including the northward movement of more southern species, shrubbing and greening of the land, changing plant communities and their associated fauna, increases in migrating invasive species displacing native Arctic inhabitants, and the emergence of new diseases” -  Arctic Biodiversity Assessment Trends 2010 Report.

Scientific assessments such as those of the Arctic Biodiversity Assessment (above) are noting that stressors on biodiversity in the Arctic are growing. Climate change is initiating many environmental changes including melting sea ice, increased run off, and an eventual rise in sea level. 

The Arctic is home to some globally significant populations of species distributed on land, and in the rivers, lakes, wetlands, and seas of the Arctic - some of which are already declining. Changes in biodiversity are also creating both challenges and opportunities for Arctic peoples. The traditional harvested foods continue to play a major role in the economic, social, and cultural welfare of many Indigenous Peoples and local communities across the Arctic. 

See below for a selection of up-to-date Assessments and Policy-related material on Arctic biodiversity.

Access recent publications

A guide to sea-ice-associated biodiversity in this time of rapid change
Assessment and Reports
Biodiversity
The Arctic Biodiversity Assessment was produced by the Arctic Council's Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna working group. It looks at the status and trends in Arctic biodiversity.
Assessment and Reports
Biodiversity
The Arctic Biodiversity Assessment was produced by the Arctic Council's Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna working group. This Report for Policy Makers provides decision-makers with key findings and policy recommendations.
Assessment and Reports
Biodiversity
The Arctic Biodiversity Assessment was produced by the Arctic Council's Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna working group. This synthesis document provides a summary of science arising from the larger Arctic Biodiversity Assessment report and suggested conservation and research priorities.
Assessment and Reports
Biodiversity
This concept paper outlines the development of the Circumpolar Boreal Vegetation Map (CBVM). CBVM is an attempt to understand the boreal in a new way that looks beyond the confines of administrative regions and regional approaches.
Assessment and Reports
Biodiversity
"Protecting Arctic Biodiversity: Limitations and Strengths of Environmental Agreements" takes a broad view of existing multilateral environmental agreements (MEAs) and examines the role of the global environment in influencing the effectiveness of Arctic MEAs in protecting biodiversity and in sustainable development.
Assessment and Reports
Biodiversity
The Global Biodiversity Outlook is the flagship publication of the Convention on Biological Diversity, which draws from a range of information sources, including National Reports, biodiversity indicators information, scientific literature, and a study assessing biodiversity scenarios for the future.
Assessment and Reports
Biodiversity
The Global Synthesis Report forms a baseline for understanding the main pressures, states and management responses relating to marine biodiversity. The Report was prepared by the Regional Seas Conventions and Action Plans for the Marine Biodiversity Assessment and Outlook Series.
Assessment and Reports
Biodiversity
Unique Arctic habitats for flora and fauna, including sea ice, tundra, lakes, and peatlands have been disappearing over recent decades, and some characteristic Arctic species have shown a decline.
Assessment and Reports
Biodiversity

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