At present, the economic activity related to the extraction of natural resources and their transportation in the Arctic region is increasing.
Large sea area has been freed from ice, which led to the development of shipping in the Arctic seas and the opening of the Northern Sea Route.
The rapid growth of navigation in the region can have a negative impact on marine ecosystems that can be reflected in:
- the pollution of the environment with oil products,
- noise interference,
- the frightening of sea mammal rookeries,
- catchment of rare species of animals and birds by fishing gear;
- pollution associated with the emergency situation of transport and other vessels (including those carrying oil products), radiation contamination;
- violation of traditional activities of coastal indigenous people settlements.
WWF Russia is working to assess the possible negative effects of shipping on various environmental components (background conditions, marine mammals and birds, ichthyocenes, etc.) in Russian Arctic waters, as well as on the traditional livelihoods of low populations of indigenous peoples in coastal settlements of the Arctic region.
Modeling of oil spills in the Bering Strait has been performed.
The recommendations on the organization of navigation in the Bering Strait have been developed.
An interactive map can be useful, with which you can assess the shipping activity in the strait and add your own objects on the map.
Work on developing the analytical capabilities of the interactive map, as well as work on development of recommendations still continues.