Ønsket velkommen til Arctic Frontiers 2020

Fylkesrådsleder Bjørn Inge Mo og medlem av ungdommens fylkesråd, Markus Haraldsvik.  - Klikk for stort bildeFylkesrådsleder Bjørn Inge Mo (Ap) og medlem av ungdommens fylkesråd, Markus Haraldsvik. I sin åpningstale til Arctic Frontiers trakk fylkesrådsleder Bjørn Inge Mo (Ap) fram at vi som bor i nord ønsker at våre barn og barnebarn også får muligheten til å leve gode liv her, og det krever en balanse mellom industriell utvikling og bevaring av naturen.

Med seg på podiet hadde fylkesrådslederen Makus Haraldsvik fra ungdommens fylkesråd. Han fikk også muligheten til å adressere publikum.

Du kan lese åpningstalene til fylkesrådsleder Bjørn Inge Mo (Ap) og Markus Haraldsvik under. Talene finnes kun på engelsk.

Arctic Frontiers arrangeres i Tromsø for 14. gang og i år er temaet «The power of knowledge».

Les mer om arrangementet her

Fylkesrådsleder, Bjørn Inge Mo (Ap)

Your Excellences, dear fellow speakers, guests and friends of the Arctic Frontiers,

It is a great pleasure for me to welcome you all to the Arctic Frontiers 2020 – and to Tromsø. For our international guests I would like to add that you are now visiting Norway’s by far largest regional administrative unit, Troms and Finnmark. Since January 1 the former Troms and Finnmark County Councils are merged, and the new one comprises almost 75 thousand square kilometres, which is a little less than the size of Ireland. So welcome to all of you also to the Arctic region of Norway.

Dear friends, knowledge is the answer to all questions on the Arctic. It was the answer 14 years ago when the Arctic Frontiers was established, it is the answer today, and will be the answer in the time to come as well.

It is an alarming fact that the temperature in the Arctic has increased twice as fast in the Arctic as in the rest of the world during the last 50 years. And in this context it is safe to say that what happens in the Arctic, does not stay in the Arctic. Disappearing snow, sea ice, glaciers and permafrost mean massive changes also for the rest of the planet.

To meet these challenges, knowledge is our most valuable resource. We need more research, focusing on sustainability, value creation and living conditions in the High North. And we need it more than ever. It is not necessarily so that yesterday’s solutions are the answers to tomorrow’s challenges. However, the fact that so many of the world’s centres of competence every year gather in Tromsø, gives me hope that we will find a basis for a common understanding and an answer to the development of the Arctic.

For us who live in the North, it is important to underline that we do want also our children and grandchildren to be able to live good lives here. It means that we have to draw the line between exploitation of natural resources and preservation, between the interests of industries and environmental protection. In order to strike the balance, there has to be a close dialogue between regional, national and international decision-makers and the scientific and business communities.

The Arctic Frontiers provides us with a platform for this kind of dialogue.

In order to address the challenges and opportunities facing the Arctic region, knowledge has always been one of the corner stones of the Arctic Frontiers. At this year’s conference knowledge is also the overarching topic, which will be discussed from many perspectives today and in the days to come.

Dear friends, I wish you interesting days here in Tromsø: Listen, discuss – agree and disagree – and continue discussing, hopefully, also after you have gone home.

And now I would like to give the floor to Markus, a representative of the young Arctic, our future. Markus is also a member of our regional Youth Council, Markus, we look forward to hearing your perspectives – the floor is yours.

Markus Haraldsvik, medlem av ungdommens fylkesråd

Dear Ministers, Mayors, dear participants,

A warm welcome to the Arctic region of Troms and Finnmark.

First, I would like to thank you for this opportunity to address this session. Young people and the voice of young people are important to fulfil the potential of the Arctic region. I stand here today as a representative of Arctic youth, but also as a representative of the indigenous peoples of the Arctic.

It is important for me to underline what Bjørn Inge just said, we need to strike the balance between sustainability and growth. The indigenous peoples have lived close to nature for hundreds of years, and we feel a strong sense of responsibility to take care of it. Living close to nature also means being grateful for its abundant resources, which have given us the possibility to live in the North. But just like the rest of the world, the Arctic region is entitled to growth – in a sustainable way.

This is an issue that concerns us young people a lot.

We do want to stay in the High North, we want to contribute and to live good lives here. A good life means, among other things, to have interesting jobs and live in communities that offer social and cultural services relevant to us. As I am sure you are all aware of, without young people the Arctic will not be able to develop over time.

Perhaps the most important element in order to make young people stay in the Arctic, is education. Today many young people leave the region to study, and many of them do not return after their final exams. In a time where the focus on the Arctic and its resources is increasing, it is more important than ever to make the young people stay to contribute to shaping our common Arctic future. We need educational institutions to offer relevant studies – at local and regional levels.

In my opinion, the best investment decision-makers can make, is to invest in  education and research, because it is also an investment in the future, in development and in young people.

Thanks for your attention!

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