NBM focuses mainly on biodiversity and ecosystems, nature conservation, as well as outdoor life, landscape, cultural environments, ecosystem services and ensuring that consideration is given to biodiversity and ecosystem services in both climate adaption work and climate change work. NBM’s work is associated with the Nordic Council of Ministers' Environment and Climate Programme; primarily chapter 5 on Biodiversity.
NBM’s activities must make a clear contribution to the work of the Nordic environmental agencies. The Group compiles data and knowledge, conveys information about best practice and supports co-operation between the national environmental agencies in the Region. NBM’s members consists of experts in environment, nature and cultural heritage from the Nordic Region. The Group’s work draws on several international agreements, including the UN Convention on Biological Diversity and the European Landscape Convention.
Every year NBM funds a range of projects either on a specific theme covered by its remit or several different themes in a wider context. In a typical year, NBM allocates around DKK 4 million to 5–8 projects. Sometimes, if the subject the project addresses is covered by more than one of the working groups, projects will receive funding from more than one working groups under the Nordic Council of Ministers. NBM’s work and priorities are describe in detail in its annual work programmes. NBM reports directly to the Nordic Council of Ministers for the Environment and Climate (MR-MK) and the Nordic Committee of Senior Officials for the Environment and Climate (EK-MK). Once NBM has decided on its annual theme, it encourages projects to apply for funding to address a specific question.