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Rod Downie, Head of UK Marine Policy, WWF, said; "The new UK Arctic Policy exposes the lack of coherence in Whitehall over climate and energy policy. Instead of looking to high risk Arctic oil and gas for energy 'security', the UK government, and governments and industry across the world, must heed the warning signs from the rapidly changing Arctic by acting with urgency and ambition to tackle climate change and transition to a renewable future.

The policy does include some welcome measures such as the conservation of Arctic species and biodiversity through marine protected areas, and respecting the rights of Arctic peoples. In time, and with much improvement, it could serve as a model for other nations with emerging interests in the Arctic'."

The UK is the closest Arctic neighbour and has longstanding interests in the region. WWF believes the government's new Arctic policy is timely given the increasing interest in Arctic resources and shipping- but it doesn't do enough to protect against the threats facing the region.

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Editor's notes
WWF is one of the world's largest independent conservation organisations, with more than five million supporters and a global network active in more than one hundred countries. Through our engagement with the public, businesses and government, we focus on safeguarding the natural world, creating solutions to the most serious environmental issues facing our planet, so that people and nature thrive. Find out more about our work, past and present at

For further information, please contact:

Justin Avern, Media Relations Manager WWF-UK, Tel: 01483 412 367, Mob: 07879 602 738, email: