Sustainable development is one of the major challenges of our age. In 1992 in Rio de Janeiro, the concept of global development named «sustainable development», derived from the Brundtland Report, was officially acknowledged; it can be classified as «development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations».
The essence of sustainable development is balancing the economic, environmental and social spheres of human life, meaning that economic growth should not lead to the degradation of the environment and should be accompanied by solving social problems.
At present, the concept of sustainable development has become central to the Arctic region. The Arctics significance for the humankind is primarily defined by the fact that it is the region to influence the status of the global environment, and the application of the sustainable development concept in the Arctic is a strategic decision.
Moreover, the Arctic is the territory of sovereign states as well as the region of global significance. Unlike the Antarctic without permanent population, the Arctic regions consists of eight sovereign countries (Russia, USA, Canada, Norway, Denmark, Iceland, Finland, Sweden), responsible for the wellbeing of about 4 million of their residents.
The issue of sustainable development is a problem of not only national but also global level, which requires productive international cooperation of both the Arctic and the non-Arctic countries, interested in the region. The countries of the North-East Asia are particularly interested in the opportunities of the Arctic region (China, Japan, South Korea). Due to its geographical position, the Sakha Republic (Yakutia) can act as the region joining the Arctic and the North-East Asia.
The experts of the Northern Sustainable Development Forum from eight circumpolar countries (Russia, USA, Canada, Norway, Denmark, Iceland, Finland, Sweden), as well from the countries of the North-East Asia (primarily, China, Japan, the Republic of Korea) discuss the opportunities and challenges of sustainable development, socio-economic and ethno-cultural development of Northern regions. Cross-country dialogues on the Arctic agenda to identify the priority and promising cooperation areas are assumed within the Forums frameworks.
The first Northern Sustainable Development Forum (the Forum) was held in September 2019 in Yakutsk, Sakha Republic (Yakutia).