The purpose of the Nordic Council prizes is to increase interest in the Nordic cultural community and in environmental co-operation, as well as to recognise outstanding artistic and environmental initiatives. The prizes will help to highlight Nordic co-operation and increase its visibility
§ 1. General conditions
The Nordic Council Environment Prize was established in 1995 following the recommendation of the Nordic Council. The statutes for the Nordic Council Environment Prize are jointly agreed by the Nordic Council and the Nordic Council of Ministers.
The statutes are to be revised at the request of either the Nordic Council or the Nordic Council of Ministers.
Should the Nordic Council and the Nordic Council of Ministers agree, the statutes and thus the Nordic Council Environment Prize shall be brought to an end.
Funding for the activity will be provided by the Nordic Council of Ministers within the budget for Nordic environmental co-operation. The size of the Nordic Council Environment Prize will be determined together with the budget.
The prize is administered by the Nordic Council of Ministers. The Nordic Council of Ministers may enter into an agreement with a third party for it to act as the secretariat for the prize (the prize secretariat).
§ 2. Criteria for the winner of the Nordic Council Environment Prize
The prize is awarded to a Nordic enterprise, organisation, or individual which has managed in an exemplary way to integrate consideration for nature and the environment into its business or work, or which in some other way has made an extraordinary positive contribution to nature and the environment.
The winning entity must have a Nordic perspective and operate in the Nordic Region and/or in relation to parties outside of the Nordic Region.
At its annual meeting, the Nordic adjudication committee sets the topic within which candidates can be nominated.
The winner will be announced and the prize awarded once a year in conjunction with an event to be decided by the Nordic Council.
The Nordic Council must inform the prize secretariat of when and where the prize will be awarded no later than the beginning of the calendar year.
Three weeks before the prize is awarded, the Nordic adjudication committee will notify the directors of the Nordic Council of its decision regarding the winner together with its motivations.
§ 3. The national adjudication committee and the Nordic adjudication committee
National adjudication committees in Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, the Faroe Islands, Åland, and Greenland that together comprise a Nordic adjudication committee are to be affiliated with the Nordic Council Environment Prize. In consultation with the Nordic Council and the prize secretariats, the Nordic Council of Ministers is establishing a handbook for the administration of the prize. This is being determined in the context of the rules on, e.g.:
- The activities of the adjudication committee
- The annual cycle of the prize
- Voting rules
- Remuneration to the members of the adjudication committees
The national adjudication committees
A national adjudication committee from each country and from the Faroe Islands, Åland, and Greenland nominate candidates for the prize after the public have put forward potential candidates. The national adjudication committees in each of the Nordic countries consist of two members and two deputies. Greenland, the Faroe Islands, and Åland each have one member and one deputy.
The members and deputies of the national adjudication committees are appointed by the Nordic Council of Ministers (by the Secretary General) on the recommendation of the national ministers for the environment for four years with the option to extend this by a further four years. Ordinary members and deputies rotate in accordance with a rotation system as described in Appendix 2 of the handbook.
Members and deputies who have served for two four-year periods in succession may be reappointed after a four-year break.
Members and deputies must have knowledge of their country’s environmental activities as well as those of neighbouring countries.
The Nordic adjudication committee
The Nordic adjudication committee selects the winner based on the nominations made by the national adjudication committees.
The Nordic adjudication committee consists of thirteen members and is made up of the ordinary members of the national adjudication committees: Two each from Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden, and one each from the Faroe Islands, Greenland, and Åland.
The Nordic adjudication committee will decide on when and how the nominations will be made public. This task can be delegated to the prize secretariat and the Communications Department at the Nordic Council and the Nordic Council of Ministers.
Members of both the national and Nordic adjudication committees are responsible for taking bias into account in the assessment of specific initiatives.
If a member is considered biased, he or she may not take part in the discussion and assessment of this or these initiatives. A member subject to bias may be replaced by the designated deputy. If there is disagreement regarding the existence of bias, this shall be decided by the spokesperson or vice spokesperson.
The national adjudication committees’ decisions on nominations and the Nordic adjudication committee’s decision on the winner are final and cannot be appealed before any higher body.
§ 4. The activities of the Nordic adjudication committee
The Nordic adjudication committee is operated by the Nordic Council of Ministers or a third party commissioned by the Nordic Council of Ministers.
The spokesperson and vice spokesperson of the Nordic adjudication committee are appointed in accordance with the rotation system described in the handbook.
The Nordic adjudication committee constitutes a quorum in which at least one representative from each participating country and any adjunct members from Greenland, the Faroe Islands, and Åland are present.
If, in exceptional circumstances, their participation is not possible, they may participate via a means of telecommunication or by way of a deputy.
The Nordic adjudication committee shall make its decision by way of a simple majority in all issues except for the decision of who to award the prize to, for which special rules apply as described in the section of the handbook on voting rules. Each member has one vote.
The Nordic adjudication committee is sworn to secrecy regarding the winning initiative until this is made public.
The Nordic adjudication committee normally holds one meeting a year. Minutes of the adjudication committee’s meetings are taken.
§ 5. Nomination procedure
The public is given the first opportunity to put forward potential candidates for the Nordic Council Environment Prize.
Thereafter each national adjudication committee may nominate no more than two candidates, and Greenland, Åland, and the Faroe Islands may each nominate no more than one candidate.
The nominations must be made no later than three months before the prize is due to be awarded. The national adjudication committee is sworn to secrecy regarding the initiatives that are nominated until they are made public.
§ 6. Administration and finance
The Nordic Council of Ministers is entering into an agreement with a third party for the performance of the function of prize secretariat. The prize secretariat handles the tasks related to the administration of the prize and the servicing of the adjudication committees.
The prize secretariats tasks etc. are determined in the handbook.
The financial year of prize activities follows the calendar year.
Reporting and administration of finances must take place in accordance with Nordic Council of Ministers’ rules for budgeting, financial administration, bookkeeping, and auditing, as well as with other rules laid down by the Nordic Council of Ministers. There will be a debriefing meeting in the Nordic Council of Ministers each January.