WWF offered a new instrument for the protection of the Arctic

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Arctic seas

World Wildlife Fund (WWF) presented the ArcNet project – a program on the protection of Arctic seas.

It is a map of priority areas of the Arctic Ocean with specific proposals for the conservation of ecosystems and biodiversity.

ArcNet should help protect the inhabitants of the northern seas in the context of the changing climate and active human development of the Arctic. The map covers the entire Arctic Ocean and adjacent seas.

“Of course, the total prohibition of any economic activity in any of these areas is out of the question.” It is necessary to develop the Arctic seas with a clear-cut and forward-looking planning, taking into account the opinions of different stakeholders,” said Dmitry Gorshkov, Director of WWF-Russia.

According to the press service of the environmental organization, the work on the project was conducted over four years. The effort brought together five national WWF offices (Canada, Denmark, Norway, Russia, and the USA), the experts of the Arctic Programme of the Fund, and more than 30 scientists worldwide, most of whom are Russian specialists.

The result was a map depicting a network of priority Arctic Ocean areas, where the “interests” of each species, community, or local ecosystem are taken into account.

The results of the machine analysis were repeatedly checked, discussed, and adjusted by experts from all of the Arctic countries. Such an approach allows to say that the project is based on the best available data and thorough scientific analysis, WWF-Russia stressed.

It was noted that the ArcNet data have a broad sphere of application. First of all, they are essential for those involved in marine planning and management. Therefore, the authors appeal to all interested parties – governments of the Arctic countries, representatives of science, business, and local communities – to actively join the dialogue and contribute to the implementation of ArcNet.

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