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WWF's Global Arctic Programme has observer status at the Council, and uses this position to take part in discussions on Council policies, work plans, reports, and communications.

The Arctic Council consists of foreign ministers of the eight Arctic countries: Iceland, Norway, Russia, US, Canada, Denmark, Sweden, and Finland. The chairmanship of the Arctic Council rotates every two years.

The arctic countries are joined by representatives of the Arctic's indigenous peoples' organisations. It is open to government and non-government observers, by invitation.

The work of the Arctic Council is carried out through its working groups:

  • Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme - AMAP (toxics, pollution, and contamination issues)
  • Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna - CAFF (biodiversity and protected areas issues)
  • Protection of the Arctic Marine Environment - PAME (marine issues)
  • Action Plan to Eliminate Pollution of the Arctic - ACAP
  • Sustainable Development Working Group - SDWG
  • Emergency Prevention, Preparedness, and Response - EPPR