“MARKOTH” NATURAL PARK WAS CREATED IN KRASNODAR REGION
How did it start?
WWF-Russia took the initiative to create a Natural Park in the Krasnodar region in 2016. Having received support for this idea, the Caucasus Ecoregional Office WWF-Russia and the Krasnodar regional public organization "All-Russian Society of Nature Conservation" started creating the Markoth Nature Park as part of the 2017 year of ecology and protected areas in Russia.
What do we need it for?
According to the WWF-Russia project, the Markoth Nature Park was to consist of three clusters located on the Black Sea coast between Novorossiysk and Arkhipo-Osipovka on an area of over 65,000 hectares. Creation of this protected area it provides conservation of about 1300 plant species, more than 240 vertebrate species, including 197 species listed in the Red Data Book of both the Russian Federation and Krasnodar region. In addition, the boundaries of the Markoth Park include 10 natural monuments of regional significance.
How was the work done and why did it take so long?
It is worth noting that a Natural Park occupying the territory of as many as 5 body councils (Gelendzhik, Novorossiysk, Abinskiy, Crimean and Severskiy districts) could appear on Krasnodar area at the end of 2017. By September 2017, WWF, together with the Center of Ecological Projects, Certification and Audit (CEPCA), had completed all the necessary work:
- conducting a comprehensive environmental survey with the participation of specialists in various fields,
- preparing materials justifying the creation of protected areas,
- discussion of these materials with the public in 5 body councils whose territories are included in the Natural Park ,
- passing the State Environmental Review,
- preparation of a draft resolution for the head of Krasnodar region administration and its approval, including with the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment of the Russian Federation.
WWF-Russia sent all the documents that were necessary for the preparation of the draft Decree on the creation of the Markoth Natural Park to the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment of Krasnodar region. However, when only one signature of the Ministry remained until the final, the legislation concerning the regime of natural objects protection changed in Russia. And the whole procedure started from scratch.
"It should be noted that locals got interested in public discussions, taken place in five body councils of Krasnodar region, on preserving the natural heritage of these territories. Some people expressed concern about the impact of the introduction of a special protection regime on the development of areas," – says Roman Mnatsekanov, Senior Coordinator of Russian Caucasus Ecoregional Office WWF-Russia – "It is worth noting that the creation of a Natural Park takes this factor into account in the design. Thanks to the functional zoning of its territory, an optimal combination of environmental issues and socio-economic development of the region is provided."
By the end of 2019, all documentation was updated, two state environmental reviews were passed, and a positive assessment was received by independent experts. This time, the project successfully passed all stages of approval and confirmation, and on October 27, 2020, the Governor of Krasnodar region signed a Decree on the creation of the Markoth Natural Park.
The creation of a Natural Park will help preserve the unique Mediterranean ecosystems, areas of inversion forest steppe, old-growth forests and the biological diversity of this territory.
Headline photo (c) Roman Mnatsekanov