Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme (AMAP)

Secretariat: Oslo, Norway

Contact: Lars-Otto Reiersen <>

 Date: October 1998

 AMAP is an international programme initiated by the Ministers of the eight Arctic countries in 1991, aimed at examining the levels of anthropogenic pollutants and at assessing their effects in all relevant compartments of the arctic environment. AMAP is one of the four programs constituting the AEPS (Arctic Environmental Protection Strategy) now co-ordinated by the Arctic Council. In 1997, a comprehensive report was published, on the background of an immense amount of background data collected during the first six years of co-operation. Until now, there are English, Norwegian and Saami language versions (references are listed in the Chapter “Notes” in end of this Bulletin), while a Russian language version still is in preparation. A complete research report “AMAP Assessment Report: Arctic Pollution Issues” will be published in late 1998. A digital AMAP project directory designed by GRID-Arendal containing detailed information on ca. 530 projects can be achieved through the AMAP Secretariat.

The AMAP results are in general relevant for the situation of the indigenous peoples of the North. In particular, a number of health-related projects were and carried out, the results of which are summarised in the above mentioned report. A tentative plan for the next five years envisages amongst others an updated report on pollution effects on human health, and a first report on combined effects of multiple stressors on Arctic ecosystems and human health. In addition, AMAP - together with the Permanent Participants of the Arctic Council (ICC; Saami Council, RAIPON) is preparing a proposal on “Indigenous Peoples, Food Security and POPs in Arctic Russia” for consideration by the Global Environmental Facility.

The AMAP phase 2 programme: "Persistent Toxic Substances, Food Security and Indigenous Peoples of the Russian North"

Date: January 2001

AMAP (Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme) Phase 2 has started up with new sampling series to assess pollution effects on the ecosystem, with a special focus on humans. The three-year project "Persistent Toxic Substances, Food Security and Indigenous Peoples of the Russian North" is carried out under this umbrella. It is a joint project of RAIPON and AMAP, funded by most of the Arctic countries and GEF (Global Environment Facility), the Nordic Council of Ministers, etc. Objectives are to map the consumption of contaminants and the effects of this on the indigenous population in the northern part of the Russian Federation. Main targets are insecticides, PCB, mercury, etc. Sampling of soil, water, organic material, etc. started in autumn 2000. Health studies will commence with a workshop in St. Petersburg in February 2001. Four areas are selected for representative studies: Kola Peninsula, Pechora area, Taymyr, and Kamchatka. RAIPON's federal and regional administration will actively participate in the project.

Update 29-01-2002