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Sweden's Arctic Strategy

Today is our review of excerpts from Sweden's Arctic Strategy. The sections discussed here will focus on plans to address the drastic climate change that is happening in the Arctic and how to pursue sustainable commercial opportunities in the region. Read pages 29 - 47 on the pdf here:

2.3 Climate and the environment

Sweden wants to work for limited warming of the Arctic in accordance with the Paris Agreement’s aim of limiting global warming. Sweden also wants to work for the conservation of biodiversity in accordance with the objectives of the Convention on Biological Diversity and to work for the implementation of a non-toxic circular economy.

• The Government will take a leading role in the implementation of the Paris Agreement to limit global warming, including in the Arctic.

• The Government intends to work for the strengthening of environmental and climate work in the Arctic Council

and for the Arctic Council to be given a more prominent role in global efforts to reduce global emissions of both long-lived and short-lived greenhouse gases.

• The Government will have a leading role in the implementation of protection for biodiversity under the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), the Ramsar Convention and other relevant international agreements.

• The Government will work for the conservation and sustainable use of Arctic biodiversity and for the provision

of adequate protection for areas of high natural and cultural values in Arctic environments.

• The Government intends to work for long-term and sustainable management of wetlands and marine ecosystems in the Arctic.

• The Government will work for regional and global action in the area of chemicals and waste with a bearing on the Arctic and the development of a non-toxic circular economy in accordance with the Government’s strategy for a circular economy.

• The Government will work to have assessments made of environmental impacts in the planning of land and water use.

• The Government will work to prevent and limit the negative impacts that can arise in radiological and nuclear emergencies involving transports of radioactive and nuclear materials, reactor-powered marine transport and floating nuclear power plants in the Arctic.

2.4 Polar research and environmental monitoring

Sweden wants to be a world-leading polar research nation with

capacity for expeditions on a year-round basis and wants Swedish

polar research to make a greater impact internationally.

• The Government will continue to strengthen research, environmental monitoring and observation systems in

and about the Arctic.

• Sweden will support and further develop international cooperation on polar research, including climate research.

• The Swedish Polar Research Secretariat needs to continue to consider possible alternatives to access a heavy polar-

classed, climate-neutral research ship or year-round activities even when it is considered that the Swedish icebreaker Oden can no longer be used for research assignments.

• Sweden intends to encourage exchanges of knowledge between researchers and indigenous peoples in the Arctic and to work to make traditional knowledge and scientific research mutually available.

2.5 Sustainable economic development and business sector interests

Sweden wants to act for sustainable economic development in the Arctic, on the basis of the 2030 Agenda and taking special account of its vulnerable environment.

• The Government will contribute to sustainable trade and investments in the Arctic region, and work to ensure that

the increase in economic activity in the Arctic benefits local economic growth.

• The Government will work to maintain and further develop a robust regulatory framework for free, fair and sustainable trade. Proactive work to address technical trade barriers and to promote greater border trade are also vital for economic

development in the Arctic.

• On the basis of the 2030 Agenda and the EU’s Green Deal, Sweden will force the pace of international cooperation to

protect the unique environment in the Arctic and minimize the negative effects of and risks associated with the use of natural resources in the region.

• Sweden intends to be a forerunner regarding the green transition. Through innovation and sustainable environmental technology, Swedish companies can contribute to a reduced environmental footprint from economic activities in the Arctic and to the transition to a circular economy.

• The Government will work for joint initiatives in the EU, OECD and Arctic Council to also contribute to a sustainable mineral industry at global level. In the context of the Nordic Council of Ministers, Sweden intends, together with the other

Nordic countries to, for instance, examine the potential for traceability and marking of metals for the introduction of a certification system, as well as the conditions for secondary extraction. Business models for products with sustainably produced metals will be examined.

• Through cooperation in the EU, Sweden will continue to follow the implementation of the Agreement to Prevent Unregulated High Seas Fisheries in the Central Arctic Ocean, and will also work in other ways for sustainable management of fisheries in the Arctic region.

• Sweden intends to promote long-term sustainable transport systems in the Arctic, in close cooperation with its Nordic neighbors and Russia.

• Sweden will actively support the ongoing work in the International Maritime Organization (IMO) to reduce emissions of

greenhouse gases from shipping.

• Sweden intends to work for cooperation with other countries in the region and between various actors so as to develop sustainable and attractive tourist destinations that take into account the Arctic’s sensitive environment and the needs and

situation of its indigenous peoples.

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