Conservation of biodiversity aimed at achieving CBD goals in the northern regions of Russia by expanding and strengthening a network of protected areas adapted to climate change
As of: January 2022
Arctic ecosystems can make a telling contribution to the implementation of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD ); however, they are also particularly threatened by climate change. Half of the Arctic is located in Russia, so the country plays a crucial role in the conservation of biological diversity. Together with local partners, the project has designed a network of protected areas that has addressed the consequences of climate change and the industrial development in the region. For example, changes in the migration behaviour of individual species like the wild reindeer, are recorded, and protected areas are planned and established to match the new habitats of endangered species. Traditional lifestyles of the local and indigenous populations are also taken into account. The project supports the networking of committed persons from the region and offers local training courses together with them, encouraging and establishing local initiatives in nature conservation.
State of implementation/results
- The project carried out monitoring and telemetry of wild reindeer in the Taimyr region with the aim of obtaining a better picture of the degree of endangerment and changes in migration routes due to climate change.
- Progress regarding the designation of the Regional Nature Reserve "Taimyrskiy": The necessary planning documents have been prepared and submitted. The planned protected area is located in the districts of the Dolgan-Nenets and the Evenks and is to cover 8.6 million hectares at the current stage.
- In six federal protected areas (Beringia National Park, Wrangel Island, Nenetsky, Taimyrsky, Putoransky, Big Arctic State Nature Reserve) a monitoring system for ecosystem changes due to climatic changes was established.
- A survey was conducted to assess the status of the wild reindeer population in the Nenets Autonomous District. This revealed that the population comprises only 510-540 animals.
- In a total of six indigenous communities in the Nenets Autonomous District, small pilot projects started to promote indigenous Nenets culture, such as traditional handicrafts and workshops, but also to generate income, such as a travel programme "Holidays in the Tundra", which is combined with monitoring of environmental pollution, such as oil leakages in the Pechora River.
- The project supports the municipality of Novoe Chaplino to develop ecotourism offers.
- To promote cooperation between Beringia National Park and neighbouring villages, the project supported them in developing tourism offers, but also in joint events between communities and the national park, such as the fishing festival "Catch, fish!".
- The project supported two Siberian universities in Krasnoyarsk with maps and teaching materials on Arctic nature, climate change and the protected area system, in order to facilitate training for members of indigenous communities.
- In 2019, the regional reserve "Kolguyevskiy Zakaznik" in the Nenets Autonomous District and the Kytalik National Park in the Republic Sacha (Yakutia) was designated.
- In each of the three project regions, agreements were established with the local population on the joint implementation of project activities and the development of adaptation plans. In the Chukotka region, two joint projects were launched: the establishment of the local NGO "Polar Bear Patrol in the village of Ryrkaipiy" and the establishment of a cultural centre in Novoe Chaplino.
- For the Beringia National Park an information and cultural centre has been established.
- A touring exhibition on the importance of nature reserves in the Nenets Autonomous District was created and shown in five municipalities. In social media the user community "Khraniteli Severa" (Northern Nature Keepers) was founded to motivate committed (young) people from the target regions to network.-- Participants of the "Northern Nature Keepers" initiative have produced films depicting people's culture, life and connection to Arctic nature.
- The Geophysical Observatory (MGO) of the Russian Hydrometeorological Service completed the analysis of recent climate changes, the following three decades and by the end of the century in the northern regions of Russia in January 2018.
- A model for climate-smart protected areas was developed. For the Russian Arctic, 85 areas were identified, 46 of them in the project regions. Based on this, a report on "Climate change and impacts on habitats and vegetation" was published.