AECO is an international organization for expedition cruise operators in the Arctic who are dedicated to manage environmentally-friendly, safe and respectable cruises. We presently have more than 50 members, 26 which are expedition cruise operators in the Arctic. This includes the majority of the expedition cruise operators in this region. Members of AECO will in years to come bring between 15000 and 20000 passengers to the Arctic.
Our members agree that expedition cruises and tourism in the Arctic must be 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. AECO-members are obligated to operate in accordance with national and international laws and regulations and agreed upon AECO by-laws and guidelines.
The association was established in 2003 and has since then:
Become the primary organization representing the concerns and views of the expedition cruise tourism companies operating in the ArcticDeveloped a comprehensive set of guidelines http://www.aeco.no/guidelines/ for cruise operations in Arctic areas which our members are obliged to follow. This includes 20 Site Guidelines for Svalbard – see http://www.aeco.no/guidelines/site-guidelines/ and the animation “Guidelines for visitors to the Arctic” http://www.aeco.no/guidelines/visitor-guidelines/, available in 14 different subtitle languages.