AECO’s guidelines are in many ways the association’s backbone and very important tools to achieve the objectives to ensure that cruise tourism in the Arctic is carried out with the utmost consideration of the natural environment, local cultures, as well as challenging safely hazards at sea and on land. But AECO’s objectives and strategies stretches further and the association is involved in many activities.


To ensure that expedition cruises and tourism in the Arctic is carried out with the utmost consideration for the vulnerable, natural environment, local cultures and cultural remains, as well as the challenging safety hazards at sea and on land.

To be recognized as the primary organization representing the concerns and views of the expedition cruise tourism companies operating in the Arctic.

To agree upon and encourage the incorporation of specific standards and guidelines of operating expedition cruises in the Arctic.

To encourage the use of the highest qualified guides and staff knowledgeable and experienced in the Arctic environment, it’s natural and human history and contemporary culture.

To stimulate and encourage coordination among expedition cruise operators offering voyages to the Arctic.

To serve as a contact and advisory group to government ministries and agencies responsible for managing and regulating the lands, surrounding marine waters, and human activities in the Arctic

To interact with and maintain an open dialogue with non-governmental organizations interested in the Arctic.

To educate all interested groups and people about the Arctic and its unique environment, culture and natural history.


Frigg Jørgensen, Executive Director

Edda Falk, Communications Manager

Brede Valanes, Marine Operations Specialist

Melissa Nacke, Environmental Specialist

Maria Florencia Becherini, Office Manager

Isabelle Howells, Communications Assistant

Read more about the secretariat ›


Executive Committee

Marie Lannborn Barker, PolarQuest AB (Chair)

Kelvin Murray, EYOS Expeditions

Karin Strand, Hurtigruten

Mark van der Hulst, Oceanwide Expeditions

Bob Simpson, Abercrombie & Kent

Marine Committee

Mark van der Hulst, Oceanwide Expeditions (chair)

Torry Sakkariassen, Hurtigruten

Leif Skog, Lindblad Expeditions

Etienne Garcia, Ponant

Guidelines Committee

Troels Jacobsen, Oceanwide Expeditions (chair)

Susan Adie, G Adventures

Adam Rheborg, Polar Quest

Kelvin Murray, EYOS Expeditions

Tore Hoem, Hurtigruten Svalbard

Tessa van Drie, Hurtigruten

Alana Faber-Swan, Adventure Canada

Alex Mc Neil, Quark Expeditions

Membership Committee

Stefan Kredel, Silversea Cruises (Chair)

Susan Adie, G Adventures

Tudor Morgan, Hurtigruten

Kelvin Murray, EYOS Expeditions

Election Committee

Troels Jacobsen, Oceanwide Expeditions

Karin Strand, Hurtigruten

Community Engagement Committee

Alex Mc Neil, Quark Expeditions (Chair)

Alana Faber-Swan, Adventure Canada

Kelvin Murray, EYOS Expeditions

Karin Strand, Hurtigruten

Malik Milfeldt, Albatros Travel


Lorraine Bets, Ship to Shore

Bob Simpson, Abercrombie & Kent

Susan Adie, G Adventures

Anja Erdmann, Poseidon Expeditions

Yacht Committee

Olivier Pitras, 69 Nord (chair)

Kelvin Murray, EYOS Expeditions

Greenland Resource Group

Anja Erdman, Poseidon

Tessa van Drie, Hurtigruten

Troels Jacobsen, Oceanwide Expeditions

Alana Faber-Swan, Adventure Canada

Malik Milfeldt, Albatros Travel

Canada Resource Group

Mario Acquarone, Hurtigruten

Kelvin Murray, EYOS Expeditions

Bob Simpson, Abercrombie & Kent

Alana Faber-Swan, Adventure Canada

Russia Resource Group

Tomas Zadrozny, Hurtigruten

Denis Cheprasov, Poseidon Expeditions

Leif Skog, Lindblad Expeditions

Alex McNeil, Quark Expeditions

Clean Seas Working Group

Susan Adie, G Adventures

Martin Berg, Polar Quest AB

Helga Kristiansen, Hurtigruten

Alana Faber-Swan, Adventure Canada

Allison Kean, Quark Expeditions

Pamela Le Noury, Noble Caledonia

Lorraine Bets, Ship to Shore


  • Annual Arctic cruise conference
  • Polar field staff conferences
  • Joint Arctic SAR TTX

Clean Seas  Efforts

  • Read about AECO’s efforts to combat marine plastic pollution here.


  • AECO supports a ban on use and carriage of heavy fuel oil in the Arctic and has signed the “The Arctic Commitment”, which calls for a phase-out of polluting heavy fuel oil (HFO) from Arctic shipping.
  • AECO has signed the Travel & Tourism Declaration on Illegal Wildlife Trade, a commitment to participate actively in the global fight against illegal wildlife trade.
  • AECO has banned the recreational use of drones by passengers traveling with AECO vessels.


  • Arctic cruise database and vessel tracker
  • Crowdsourced hydrographic data
  • Off-Vessel Risk Assessment Tool
  • Community engagement efforts
  • Community guidelines and community specific guidelines
  • Developed 21 site specific guidelines for Svalbard


  • Norwegian ship safety Act
  • Norwegian Harbor and fairway Act
  • Port state control in Svalbard
  • Regulation regarding duty to report position in Svalbard
  • Regulation relating the use of Bellsund – vanMijen waters
  • Duty to notify ship accidents and incidents
  • NOx tax Norway
  • Jan Mayen nature reserves
  • Protected areas regulations in Svalbard
  • Management plan for Eastern Svalbard nature reserves
  • Amendment Svalbard Environmental Protection Act
  • Pilotage requirements in Svalbard
  • Duty to carry observer in Greenland
  • Management plan for Greenland national park
  • Executive Order on tourism in Greenland
  • Pairing of vessels in Greenland
  • Amendment of Sea Safety Act, Greenland

Involved in

  • Assessing cruise tourism opportunities and threats in Canada
  • Dialogue wit the Russian Arctic National Park regarding tourism development
  • Pan-Arctic and international activities through:
    • Arctic Council PAME, AMAP and AMSA
    • World Metrology Organization (WMO)
    • Arctic Hydrograph’s forum
    • Nordic Council


  • AECO works, inter alia, with stakeholders such as IAATO, CLIA, ECC/CLIA Europe, Cruise Norway, Svalbard Tourism and Visit Greenland.

Project based partnership

  • Joint Rescue Coordination Center Northern Norway – ARCSAR (Arctic Search and Rescue Network)
  • Norwegian Coastal administration – Risk of ship accidents Eastern Svalbard
  • University of Tromsø – Measuring and managing introduction of non-native organisms
  • Nordlandsforskning – 1st Science-Industry platform on expedition cruise tourism in Svalbard.
  • University of Ottawa – Site guidelines in Canada
  • British Antarctic Survey – Optimizing situational awareness in the Arctic through integrated space technologies
  • Danish Meteorology Institute – Improved situational awareness in the Arctic
  • Vegaspace – Space based solutions and services
  • Norwegian Hydrographic Services – Crowd sourcing depth soundings
  • Government of Yukon – Use of guidelines in permitting processes
  • Norwegian Meteorology Institute – PRIMER (“Polar ships, Routing in Ice,
    Monitoring, and Emergency Response”
  • Danish Maritime Authorities EfficienSea 2 project – AECO is a part of the High Level User Group

Analyzing cruise tourism development, developing statistics and presenting and representing on behalf of our members are important parts of our activities.

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