One Planet - Polar Summit: The first Summit devoted to the preservation of glaciers and poles


Hosted by the Paris Peace Forum, The One Planet - Polar Summit is being held from 8 to 10 November 2023 in Paris. This first international Summit devoted to glaciers and poles aims to strengthen international cooperation to preserve the cryosphere and glacial and polar biodiversity. The major representatives of the international scientific community along with political leaders and representatives, including French President Emmanuel Macron, are to attend.

France, a polar nation

The One Planet - Polar Summit is being held to address one of the goals set in the National Polar Strategy. Adopted in 2022, it sounds the alarm about the fragility of glacial and polar worlds and proposes concrete responses at the level of the international community.

Find out more about France’s National Polar Strategy for 2030

Throughout history, France has made a name as a polar nation with its tradition of exploration and expeditions, and the permanent presence of French scientists in the two poles. Since 2000, it has been an Arctic Council observer. During the International Polar Year (2007-2008), France was involved in 60 research projects focused on polar nations to raise awareness about the sensitive nature of the poles, which are strongly impacted by climate change. France ranks 9th globally in terms of scientific publications about the Arctic and Antarctic, and more specifically 5th in terms of the Antarctic.

French Ambassador for the Poles

Since 2020, Olivier Poivre d’Arvor has served as the Ambassador for the Poles and Maritime Issues. He is also President Macron’s Special Envoy to the United Nations Ocean Conference in 2025.
In 2023, the Ambassador participated in the annual Arctic Circle Assembly in Reykjavik, Iceland, where a light was shone on the responsibility of the States in the region and the European Union in environmental protection and the effects of climate change.
In line with these concerns, he presented the One Planet - Polar Summit, dedicated to the preservation of the cryosphere and adaptation of its ecosystems.

The protection of glaciers and the poles, a focus of debates

The Arctic and Antarctica are two major strategic geographical areas that are indispensable to regulating the climate and preserving biodiversity globally. The consequences of climate change, which is causing ice to melt and sea levels to rise, are making the affected populations and ecosystems more vulnerable.

Some figures

Since 1994, the rate at which ice is melting rose by 65%, from 800 billion tonnes per year to 1.3 trillion in 2017. The United Nations, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and France are sounding the alarm about the exponential melting of ice in the Arctic and Antarctic, a problem that requires immediate action by the international community.

To be held at the French National Museum of History, the One Planet - Polar Summit will bring together the international scientific community in order to establish a long-term strategy for the protection and adaptation of glacial and polar biodiversity and populations.

The purpose of this Summit is to together rally support from all the actors in the public, private and economic sectors by engaging with political leaders and experts from indigenous and local communities who are directly impacted.

That is why this Summit has invited scientific researchers to attend from some 40 glacial and polar countries, as well as experts from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES). The aim is for them to share their observations and their conclusions on actions to be conducted to protect the populations and ecosystems of the poles and glaciers, and help them adapt to the collapse of the cryosphere.

Lastly, on 10 November, the Heads of State and Government of the countries concerned, including Emmanuel Macron, will discuss fresh cooperation opportunities for the protection and adaptation of these regions, the impacts of climate change on the populations living in the poles and on glaciers, and finance for action to save the cryosphere.

Discover the full programme for the One Planet-Polar Summit