This webpage will be updated regularly. Last updated February 2018
Arctic EIA Newsletter
Arctic EIA – Good Practice Recommendations for Environmental Impact Assessment and Public Participation in the Arctic
Welcome to follow the Arctic EIA project – the generation of good practice recommendations for EIA in the Arctic region and to participate in gathering already existing good practices that can stand as examples for others.
Good Practice Recommendations for Environmental Impact Assessment and Public Participation in the Arctic – Arctic EIA in short – is a project endorsed by the Sustainable Development Working Group of the Arctic Council (www.sdwg.org). The Arctic EIA project is led by Finland during the Finnish chairmanship of the Arctic Council in 2017–2019. The project is co-led by Canada, the Kingdom of Denmark and the Gwich’in Council International.
Arctic EIA aims at providing Arctic-specific recommendations that can be applied in the vulnerable and changing Arctic environment, taking into account the indigenous peoples and other inhabitants living there. Since economic activities are likely to increase in the Arctic, the role of EIA in the project planning will be increasing. Mapping good practices, sharing experiences, learning from each other and co-creating recommendations form the core of the project.
The Arctic EIA project continues the early cooperation in the field of EIA by the Arctic countries.
Questionnaire for mapping good practices
The Arctic EIA project is exploring good practice examples from various EIA projects across the Arctic region. A questionnaire, targeted to all EIA stakeholders — Indigenous Peoples and other Arctic residents, authorities, developers, consultants, NGOs, and other interested parties — provided the Editorial group of the project, with practices from across the Arctic. This information is being used as a base for co-creating good practice recommendations for EIA in the Arctic.
What is good practice? Different actors may have different views on what worked well, and what did not, in the process of EIA. Generally good practice can be defined as practice that has proven to work well and has produced good results, and can therefore be recommended as a model. At this stage we want to leave the determination of good practice up to the stakeholders who answer the questionnaire. Producing a definition of “good practice” in this case is a process to which everyone can contribute. You may visit the webpage of the International Association for Impact Assessment to view how good practice is defined there.
Workshops and Other Events
In addition to the questionnaire, practices of EIA within the Arctic are shared in summits and workshops. The following are some of the events that have been scheduled so far:
- Arctic Energy Summit in Helsinki September 18–20, 2017. There was a session on EIA in energy projects in the Arctic on Wednesday Sept 20 (www.arcticenergysummit.com)
- Two workshops focused on the good practices of EIAs and public participation in the Arctic were held in the following locations:
- Utqiagvik/Barrow, Alaska –29 November 2017. Working title of the workshop was Indigenous consultation and meaningful engagement in an EIA process. This workshop was organized by the Institute of North.
- Rovaniemi, Finland 11–12 December 2017. Working title of the workshop was Tomorrow’s Arctic EIA: Nordic possibilities and new This Nordic workshop was supported by the Nordic Council of Ministers.
- Workshops in Russia and Canada (April 2018) are planned.
- Arctic EIA project was presented in a poster at the annual conference of the International Association for Impact Assessment (IAIA) in Montreal in April 2017. It was also presented in a side event at the Espoo Convention’s 7th Meeting of the Parties in Minsk in June 2017. The full name of the Espoo Convention is the UN/ECE Convention on Environmental Impact Assessment in a Transboundary Context.
The deliverables of the project will be:
- Good Practice Recommendations for EIA and Public Participation in the Arctic to be delivered to the Ministerial meeting of the Arctic Council in the spring of 2019.
- An established network of experts and actors in EIA in the Arctic.
Introducing the Staff
Päivi A. Karvinen, Project Coordinator
Päivi works full time in the project coordinating and facilitating the project in the Ministry of the Environment. She is the main point of contact of the project. Päivi’s expertise is Environmental Impact Assessment, including pilot studies and other environmental fields. Päivi has been active for years as a chair and in other positions in the Finnish Association of Impact Assessment.
Päivi A. Karvinen
Ministry of the Environment, Finland
tel. +358 50 308 0194
Seija Rantakallio, Project Leader
Seija works as a Ministerial Adviser in the Ministry of the Environment and is in charge of enforcement and development of EIA legislation, guidance of regional environmental authorities and preparing the Finnish position in EIA matters in the EU and within the UN/ECE Convention on Environmental Impact Assessment in a Transboundary Context (Espoo Convention). She is the Point of Contact of the Espoo Convention in Finland and a former chair of the Implementation Committee of the Convention.
Ministry of the Environment, Finland
tel. +358 400 143 937,
The Steering Group consisting of representatives from lead and co-lead countries:
- Seija Rantakallio, Finland – Ministry of the Environment
- Sarah Cox, Canada – Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada
- Ole Geertz Hansen, Kingdom of Denmark – Greenland Institute of Natural Resources
Sarah and Ole will be introduced in the next newsletter.
Editorial Group consisting of nominated Country and Permanent Participant coordinators
Arctic countries and Permanent Participants (Indigenous Peoples’ organizations) of the Arctic Council have each nominated an expert for the project. The coordinators are involved in the project to provide expertise on unique Arctic features of each country, identify EIA actors to form the network, help to collect good practice examples and eventually to help identify and draft the recommendations. Coordinators form an Editorial Group. The nomination of coordinators was organized via the country and Permanent Participant representatives within the Arctic Council’s Sustainable Development Working Group. Coordinators are:
- Finland: Timo Jokelainen, Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment in Lapland
- Sweden: Egon Enocksson, Swedish Environmental Protection Agency
- Norway: Fredrik Juell Theisen, Ministry for Climate and the Environment Iceland: Jakob Gunnarsson, National Planning Agency
- Kingdom of Denmark: Ole Geertz Hansen, Greenland Institute of Natural Resources
- Canada: Kim Pawley, Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada
- United States: Edward (Ted) Boling, Council on Environmental Quality
- Russian Federation: Marina V. Nenasheva, Northern Arctic Federal University at Arkhangelsk
- Saami Council: Gunn-Britt Retter
- Inuit Circumpolar Council: Thomas Sheldon (Canada), Vernae Angnaboogok (Alaska), Parnuna Egede (Greenland)
- Gwich’in Council International: Adam Chamberlain
- Arctic Athabaskan Council: Cindy Dickson
In addition to Country and Permanent Participant coordinators the Editorial Group is complemented by:
- Arctic Economic Council: Kjerstin Skeidsvoll Lange
- Arctic Centre, University of Lapland: Pamela Lesser
Editorial Group started its work at the kick-off meeting of the project in Rovaniemi, Finland in June 2017.
Follow the Arctic EIA project
A newsletter will be issued quarterly to provide updates on the project. You can sign in/sign out to follow the project.
You can also follow us on the SDWG website.