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Arctic leanup: Rubbish and Museum Exhibits
January 24, 2014 18:52


The Russian Arctic was tidied up. The employees of the “Russian Arctic” National Park summarized the work for 2013. 

The cleanup of the last traces of economic activity in the archipelago of Franz Josef Land was conducted on the three islands: The Land of Alexanda, the Islands of Hooker and Graham Bell.  People collected and removed 4,305 tons of scrap metal, 2,552.5 tons of oily sludges; 1,145 tons of construction waste. They managed to reduce environmental damage previously caused to the nature on Novaya Zemlya – in the area of Severny Island near Zhelaniya Cape removing more than 4,000 tons of waste. It included 2,206.1 tons of scrap metal, 1086.3 tons of construction and industrial waste and 730.3 tons of oil products.

Unique works for the Russian Arctic territories were carried out on the Island of Graham Bell (Franz Josef Land) - several problems were solved simultaneously. It was necessary not only to collect Arctic waste, but to do it as soon as possible - the coastline of the island is exposed to severe erosion.  There was a risk that the water would be spoilt by the contents of barrels of former military aircraft warehouses, based on the Island of Graham Bell. But the pouring of oil products was avoided. An aircraft that will be a part of the exposure of the future open-air museum was left on the island in the course of works on the conservation of historical and cultural heritage.

The cleanup of the Tikhaya Bay territory on the Hooker Island (Franz Josef Land) was conducted manually without the use of heavy machinery just like in the last year. This was due to the fact that the Tikhaya Bay is an entire big museum. It was the first Soviet year-round polar station where E.T. Krenkel implemented the first short wave communication session with Antarctica. During the Great Patriotic War it was the only Soviet polar station which did not terminate their activities, even despite the termination of supply for the period of military activities. 

The volunteers were involved in the work on elimination of environmental damage on the islands of Franz Josef Land for the first time this year – the fighters from the NWFD district student team “Gandvik”. The students who worked on the islands of Hooker and the Land of Alexandra showed high work efficiency and gave a good account of themselves. According to the director of the “Russian Arctic” National Park Roman Ershov, the negotiations with the rector of the Northern (Arctic) Federal University Elena Kudryashova have been held with regard to continuation of the practice of cooperation with the construction teams, the plans are being developed concerning involvement of the students in the work on the Island of Hooker and the Land Alexandra in 2014.


Author: Anna Dorozhkina

Tags: Russian Arctic Franz Josef Land Tikhaya Bay Northern Federal University  


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