Polar bear protection forum
Moscow, 4-6 December 2013
An international forum on protection of the polar bear opened in Moscow on December 4. On the agenda are measures to ensure the survival of Arctic fauna species in the conditions of retreating Arctic ice.
The forum is being attended by heads of environmental departments of the Arctic states: Russia, Canada, USA, Norway, the Danish autonomous territory of Greenland and representatives of international ecological organizations.
"The population of polar bear is in a critical condition because of global climate change, water pollution and poaching. We are planning to increase the territory under protection many times and stimulate growth in the population of Arctic wild animals - above all, the polar bear, which is a symbol of the Arctic region”: Russian minister of natural resources Sergei Donskoi told to the forum participants.
By the middle of the 21st century, the population might drop by two-thirds because of the narrowing ice. At present, the population of polar bear in Russia numbers 5,000-7,000. The Russian government put the animal on the list of particularly valuable animals under threat of extinction.
To date, four wildlife reserves have been created in the areas of polar bear key habitats: ("Wrangel Island", "Bolshoy Arkticheskiy", "Ust-Lena" and "Gydanskiy"), two national parks ("Russian Arctic" and "Beringia"), two federal nature reserves ("Franz Josef Land" and "Severozemelsky"), three regional wildlife reserves (including "Cape Vankarem" and "Cape Kozhevnikov") and six nature reserves in Yakutia.