Arctic Yearbook 2015 - Page 417

417 Arctic Yearbook 2015 In their periodic report on national circumstances and implementation, the Arctic states have increasingly provided information related to the vulnerability of their northernmost territories and to ongoing scientific research conducted in the region (Duyck 2015: 67). On the other hand, the eight states have seldom referred to the region in their negotiating positions and, when they did, these references related primarily to the need for further scientific research on regional climate processes. Additionally, the visibility of the Arctic Council and its climate-related projects has been very limited in the climate talks. Firstly, the Arctic Council lacks observer status to the UNFCCC due to its peculiar legal nature and consequently has much more limited options to provide contributions to the process. Secondly, some of its members have explicitly requested in the past the Council not to become directly involved in the negotiations. During its recent chairmanship of the Council, Canada also discontinued the practice of delivering an oral ministerial statement on behalf of the Council during the annual conference. Thus, while the Arctic states have repeatedly emphasized the importance of tackling Arctic climate change in each ministerial declaration adopted by the Arctic Council, they have done relatively little to promote this specific agenda under the aegis of the UNFCCC. Participation to the climate negotiations by Arctic indigenous peoples Representatives from Arctic indigenous peoples constitute a second group of actors who could raise Arctic specific issues in the climate process. Arctic indigenous peoples have been recognized as key actors in relation to regional environmental governance and have secured a unique status at the Arctic Council (Koivurova 2011). Building on this experience, indigenous representatives have participated regularly at the climate talks, either as members of the governmental delegations or with an observer status. Arctic indigenous peoples’ organization the Inuit Circumpolar Council (ICC) in particular participated