AMSA 2011 Progress Report: Status on Implementation of the AMSA 2009 Report Recommendations

PAME , Arctic shipping
The Arctic Marine Shipping Assessment (AMSA) Report was completed and approved by Arctic Council Ministers at their meeting in Tromsø, Norway in April 2009. The AMSA Report examines Arctic shipping from historical, legal, environmental, infrastructure and other perspectives and provides 17 recommendations to promote safety and environmental awareness of current and future Arctic shipping activity. Issuance of the AMSA report closely followed two years (2007, 2008) of the lowest levels of Arctic sea ice coverage in recorded history and increasing regional and global concern that improved marine access and a significant increase in Arctic marine activity, particularly transit shipping and cruise vessel traffic, was putting the Arctic marine environment at risk.The AMSA report recommendations involve multiple stakeholders and apply at national, Arctic Regional, and international levels. The recommendations are aligned under three themes: Enhancing Arctic Marine Safety; Protecting Arctic People and the Environment; and Building the Arctic Marine Infrastructure. Some of the recommendations can be realized quickly while others are complex and long-term in nature, and require considerable resources to implement. Although each of the 17 recommendations deals with a particular issue or hazard, they need to be considered collectively in order to effectively address the potential impacts of increased Arctic shipping activity. This progress report on the status of the implementation of the AMSA report’s 17 recommendations is intended to acknowledge the successes and significant progress in several areas and, at the same time, draw attention to areas and recommendations where progress is limited and more work may be needed.