Scotland and the New North


The Arctic Circle Forum,Scotland and the New North, is to take place in Edinburgh on 19th to 21st of November. The Forum in Scotland will be hosted by the Scottish Government and is one of a series of meetings to arise from The Arctic Assembly.

Arctic Assembly

By Tbkaji (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

This is the first time Scotland has hosted the Forum and talks will explore the shared challenges facing northern nations, including those affecting remote and island communities, such as:

  • Growing tourism in a way that involves and benefits local people, while also safeguarding the environment
  • Experiences from across the region in local projects to harness renewable energy and low carbon technology
  • Ensuring young people have a voice and are able to influence the decisions on the future of their communities

Chair of the Arctic Circle Assembly  Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson said:

“Scotland has formed policies in areas which are of great importance to us in the Arctic, including climate change, clean energy, new forms of economic activity, shipping and tourism. Therefore I very much look forward to participating in the forum in Edinburgh, and furthering the Arctic Circle’s links and cooperation with the Scottish Government.”

The conference is open to the public with tickets on sale on their website. It will be opened by Nicola Sturgeon, First Minister of Scotland. Some of the other main speakers are: Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson, former President of Iceland and Chair of the Arctic Circle, Lord Deben, Chairman of the UK Committee on Climate Change, and Ségolène Royal, France’s Ambassador for the Arctic and Antarctic Regions.

Fiona Hyslop,External Affairs Secretary in the Scottish Government explained the importance of the Forum,she said:

“How we empower and safeguard remote and island communities is a shared challenge across the wider arctic region. With experts from the worlds of academia and business, alongside representatives from governments, corporations and NGOs, the forum is sure to be a hotbed for innovation and ideas.”

Arctic Circle Assembly

Arctic Circle By Tbkaji (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Over 50 nations participate in the annual Arctic Assembly. It is attended by elected politicians from participating Governments but also a range of interested organisations and individuals. 

The smaller Forums examine in more detail specific issues.

Reporter: Fiona Grahame


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