On May 4, 2011, the US-based Clean Air Task Force held an online briefing to update the news media on the state of Arctic climate changes, and recommend possible courses of action for the Arctic Council.

The briefing precedes a May 12 meeting in Nuuk, Greenland of Foreign Ministers from the eight countries surrounding the Arctic, which US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton will attend.

The meeting will present a rare opportunity to aggressively address climate change in the Arctic, where warming temperatures, melting sea ice, shrinking of the Greenland ice sheet causing globally rising sea levels, and disruption of ecological systems for the region’s indigenous peoples and wildlife, are all occurring at a dramatic and increasingly rapid pace.

At the meeting, the conferees must commit the member nations of the Arctic Council to a robust set of actions that will particularly help curb emissions of short-lived climate forcers (SLCFs), especially black carbon and methane, that are having such important effect on the regional and global climate.

ACT is part of a research project on Coastal Cities At Risk, in partnership with a team of Canadian researchers led by Extreme Weather policy author Dr. Gordon McBean. The study, which begins shortly, will look at selected coastal cities at risk from sea-level rise and other climate-driven threats in Canada and developing countries: Vancouver, Lagos, Bangkok and Manila. ACT will lead coordination of the work in Vancouver over the project’s three years.