There is a growing national and international appreciation of the importance of Arctic ecosystems and an increasing knowledge of global pollution and resulting environmental threats. The Arctic is highly sensitive to pollution and much of its human population and culture is directly dependent on the health of the region's
ecosystems. Limited sunlight, ice cover that inhibits energy penetration, low mean and extreme temperatures, low species diversity and biological productivity and long-lived organisms with high lipid levels all contribute to the sensitivity of the Arctic ecosystem and cause it to be easily damaged. This vulnerability of the Arctic to pollution requires that action be taken now, or degradation may become irreversible. The governments of the Arctic countries have become increasingly aware of the need for, and their responsibility to combat these threats to the Arctic ecosystem. On the initiative of Finland, the eight Arctic
countries of USSR, USA, Sweden, Norway, Iceland, Finland, Denmark and Canada have met to prepare a strategy to protect the Arctic environment.
Print copy available upon request at the Alaska Medical Library, located on the second floor of UAA/APU Consortium Library. Ask for accession no. 100823.