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Sea Ice

Thirty scientists, managers and community experts from Russia, Canada, Greenland/ Denmark and the United States, including the Arctic Athabascan Council, Inuit Circumpolar Council, Gwich´in Council International, World Wildlife Fund Arctic and the Association of Polar Early Career Scientists met in Vancouver, Canada on March 22th to 23rd, 2011 to develop a technical report on the effects of sea-ice reduction on biodiversity in the Arctic and accompanying conservation & scientific recommendations. Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna (CAFF) Working Group of the Arctic Council organised and managed the workshop.

The workshop considered urgent issues facing Arctic sea ice-associated biodiversity which included:

  • An overview of sea ice ecosystems and the role of ice in regions where sea ice is integral
  • The potential for wildlife and communities to adapt to a changing sea ice scenario
  • Impacts of reduced sea ice on genetic diversity of species
  • New species likely to establish as a result of reduction in sea ice
  • Positive and negative effects of changes to species composition on other wildlife and people
  • Priority actions that could be taken in support of sea ice-associated biodiversity
  • Information gaps that require targeted research


Building on the results of this workshop the project will develop a technical report on the current status and trends of sea ice-associated biodiversity, including direct effects on marine species and indirect effects on terrestrial species. A second workshop will be held in Russia in autumn 2011 to finalise the report and develop accompanying conservation, scientific and policy recommendations.

For further information please contact: Tom Barry (Tom at /+354 8619824, +354 8619824. To download a press package, please visit the CAFF homepage