The Salekhard Declaration (2006) welcomed “the initiative of developing ACAP partnerships with the Permanent Participants to identify and remove local resources of contamination and improve environmental conditions in indigenous communities”. The Indigenous Peoples' Contaminants Action Program (IPCAP) Expert Group or – at that time – Project Steering Group was established in September 2008 at the ACAP Working Group Meeting in order to implement this initiative. It was confirmed by the decision of the Arctic Council Ministerial Meeting in Tromsø on 31 March 2009.

Industrial development of the Arctic has been accompanied by waste accumulation, especially in the vicinity of indigenous villages, that represents a growing threat to the safety and health of the Arctic people. Recent studies confirm that contamination of the Arctic environment of the indigenous peoples is getting increasingly severe. Due to traditional living conditions, the peoples of the Arctic are exposed to higher levels of contamination in all components of environment: air, water, soil and food.


The goal of IPCAP is to enhance involvement of Arctic Indigenous peoples’ communities in reducing exposure and impact of contaminants in their communities. The scope of activity of the IPCAP EG was defined by the Tromsø Declaration – that is to “address contaminant issues in indigenous peoples’ communities in remote areas of the Arctic”.

The IPCAP EG is to recommend and implement projects that focus on:

  1. the identification of local sources of contamination
  2. improvement of the environmental conditions in Arctic Indigenous communities by reducing exposure to and impact of contaminants.
Lisa Mack
Executive Director, Aleut International AssociationИнтернет-сайт

Santina Gay

USEPA Alaska Tribal Coordinator