We are very proud that our members, as well as authorities and partners appriciate the work we do.

Statement from a government official

“With the joint workshop and tabletop exercise conducted in Reykjavik in April 2016 an important relationship between AECO and the Icelandic Coast Guard emerged. AECO has a significant position as an international organization for expedition cruise operators in the Arctic and is dedicated to advance safe cruise tourism. As such, AECO is a key partner in strengthening cooperation with the cruise operators and the vessels they operate. In case of a major incident leading to a mass rescue operation, vessels of opportunity can constitute a substantial role in the rescue, for which reason familiarization as well as exchange of knowledge, expertise, and capacity with these essential stakeholders – adding to the effectiveness and outcome of joint efforts – is very much welcomed. The Icelandic Coast Guard considers AECO a valued partner in the balanced effort to increase safety within the Icelandic area of responsibility.”

Chief of Operations Ásgrímur L. Ásgrímsson and Officer Conducting the Exercise Snorre Greil, Islandic Coast Guard.

Statement from a researcher

“AECO is a leader in industry-led management of tourism in the Arctic. The production of specific guidelines for highly visited and sensitive sites is a key component in the management of tourist impacts. These comprehensive and science-based guidelines are important in protecting cultural and natural heritage while enabling visitors to have safe and enjoyable experiences. As we undertake our own production of site guidelines in various parts of the Canadian Arctic, we appreciate the model provided by AECO.”

Margaret E. Johnston, Lakehead University, Canada

Statement from a member

“AECO is safeguarding the sustainability of ship borne expedition tourism to the High Arctic. Hurtigruten Guests to Svalbard and Greenland are visiting small communities, enjoy unspoiled nature and scout for the exotic wildlife of the region – AECO provides us with essential guidelines for how to make these meetings positive and rewarding.”

Olav Fjell, former CEO, Hurtigruten ASA

Statement from a co-operating partner

“This kind of high quality tourism, with small groups, suitable vessels and very skilled guides is a leading example. Those who have had the opportunity to experience the spectacular Arctic environment become good ambassadors for the protection of these areas.”

Dr. Neil Hamilton, former director of WWF Arctic Program

Statement from a local operator

“Cruise-tourism is today an important income in our region and via good cooperation with AECO, we make sure that all visits is carried out in respect of the nature, culture and local people.”

Karina Bernlow,  Nanu Travel, Ittoqqortoormiit

Statement from a government official

“Whenever there has been need to inform about different topics and new situations, it has proven advantageous to communicate with AECO who has forwarded the information to the members. At the same time AECO contributes to the Ministries day to day work with their valuable knowledge and therefore also contributes to better insight in the expedition cruise industry. The Ministry considers it a great advantage that the cruise operators have organized themselves in an association like AECO which focuses on Greenland as a tourist destination as well as educates people about the special conditions in the Arctic. ”

Bjarne Petersen, former Head of department, Greenland’s Ministry of Domestic Affairs, Nature and Environment

Statement from a Visit Greenland official

“AECO has been invaluable to us in creating strong relations to the expedition cruise companies operating in Greenland. AECO has been a responsive, open and constructive partner for us in securing benefits from tourism to our small communities and when it comes to safeguarding the environment and our often fragile cultural and historical locations. To us AECO represent an important and admirable example of how private companies take responsibility for the environment and wildlife and actively engage with the local communities”

Anders U. la Cour Vahl, former Deputy Director, Visit Greenland  & Business Council

Statement from the Governor of Svalbard

“The Governor of Svalbard appreciates good communication and dialogue with the different industry principles in connection with the management of Svalbard. We consider it beneficial that these organizations, individuals and interest groups organize themselves, like the expedition cruise operation has done through AECO. This enables the Governor to have direct contact, feedback and dialogue with all assembled and interested parties in the industry. The Governor alsoappreciates the good cooperation with AECO-companies in connection with our “Clean up Svalbard”-project.”

Odd Olsen Ingerø, former Governor of Svalbard

Statement from a researcher

“AECO has been a wonderful, co-operative partner in NPIs Marine Mammal Sighting Programme. Their knowledgeable, expert guides report their numerous sightings of marine mammals from Svalbard excursions every summer. The valuable data accumulating from the programme includes summer distribution of common, resident species (and potential changes in distribution and timing of events among these animals) as well as exciting observations of rare species, that are so difficult for science expeditions to “catch”! We look forward to more AECO members and all future co-operation.”

Prof. Kit Kovacs, Biodiversity Research Section Leader, Norwegian Polar Institute

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