2017 WWF Arctic Council Conservation Scorecard

United States

© Kevin Schafer / WWF

Ratings by assessment area

Detailed ratings

B Conservation Areas

Pressure on the Arctic’s ecosystems is rapidly growing. Industrial fishing, the disruption of habitats, marine shipping, oil and gas development, and mining all have negative impacts on Arctic biodiversity. Furthermore, climate change represents the most serious threat to Arctic biodiversity and exacerbates all other threats.

  • Identification of Conservation Areas
  • 4/5
  • Protecting Areas of Ecological Importance
  • 3/5
  • Mechanisms to Safeguard Connectivity
  • 0/1
  • Overall Rating
  • 7/11

All ratings for Conservation Areas See detailed scoring criteria

C Biodiversity

Biodiversity conservation in the Arctic is a major challenge, given ecosystems are in climate-driven (and increasingly, development-driven) flux and typically have simple food web structures. The magnitude and speed of change, along with growing threats, challenges the ability of Arctic biodiversity to provide ecosystem services to Arctic peoples.

  • Mainstreaming Biodiversity
  • 0/6
  • Reducing Human Disturbance outside Protected Areas
  • 4/4
  • Sustainable Management of Living Resources and Habitat
  • 3/3
  • Biodiversity Research and Monitoring
  • 3/4
  • Total score
  • 10/17

All ratings for Biodiversity See detailed scoring criteria

D Shipping

Arctic shipping – both destinational and transit – has increased significantly during the past decade. This trend is projected to continue due to increased demand for resources and shortened routes as Arctic shipping lanes become free of ice for longer periods. Both factors increase the risk of major environmental impacts.

  • Protection for Areas of Heightened Ecological and Cultural Significance
  • 0/4
  • Protection from Invasive Species 
  • 1/2
  • Reducing Air Emissions from Shipping
  • 1/4
  • Arctic Marine Traffic System
  • 1/1
  • Total score
  • 3/11

All ratings for Shipping See detailed scoring criteria

A Oil Spill Cooperation

Oil spills from both shipping and oil and gas development represent significant threats to ecosystem health.

  • National Contingency Plans for Preparedness and Response
  • 5/5
  • Authorities and Capacity for Oil Pollution Response
  • 7/7
  • Oil Spill Monitoring and Compliance
  • 6/7
  • Funding for Prevention and Response Measures
  • 1/1
  • Measures to Control Oil and Gas Activities in Sensitive Areas
  • 1/1
  • Oil Extraction and Conservation Areas
  • 3/3
  • Total score
  • 23/24

All ratings for Oil Spill Cooperation See detailed scoring criteria

B Black Carbon and Adaptation

Climate change is the single most important driver of change in the Arctic.

  • Black Carbon Emissions Inventories
  • 1/1
  • Black Carbon Early Actions
  • 1/1
  • Emissions from Flaring
  • 1/1
  • Climate Change Adaptation
  • 0/1
  • Climate Change Observation
  • 3/4
  • Total score
  • 6/8

All ratings for Black Carbon and Adaptation See detailed scoring criteria

D Ecosystem - Based Management

Ecosystem-based management (EBM) is an effective, coordinated and coherent way of managing ecosystems and their services in changing conditions.

  • Environmental Impact Assessments (EIAs), Strategic Environmental Assessments (SEAs), and Risk Assessments
  • 2/3
  • Assessments of Combined Effects of Multiple Stressors
  • 0/2
  • Applying the Ecosystem Approach
  • 0/6
  • Cooperation in Advancing Implementation of EBM
  • 1/1
  • Total score
  • 3/12

All ratings for Ecosystem - Based Management See detailed scoring criteria