Environmental security is a priority in Arctic development

Environmental security is a priority in Arctic development

22 July 2014

A round table discussion on Arctic exploration, organised with the support of the Rosneft petroleum company and the Russian Geographical Society (RGS), was held at the Arctic Research and Design Centre.


Researchers for the first time discussed opportunities for drafting a special scientific interdisciplinary programme on comprehensive Arctic research, which will formulate principles of economic activities in the region, including clear environmental regulations on developing the Arctic shelf. The participants tried to determine priorities in studying polar territories and key issues of international scientific cooperation.


Special Presidential Envoy on Cooperation in the Arctic and Antarctic, President of the State Polar Academy and RGS First Vice President Artur Chilingarov acted as a moderator of the round table.


Environmental security of the Arctic remains a priority. Chilingarov praised Rosneft for its responsible approach to this issue and its attention to Arctic research. “It is impossible to imagine comprehensive research and exploration of the Russian Arctic without the cooperation of business, the state, and public organisations. I’m pleased to say that Rosneft is paying serious attention to this issue.”


Professor Arkady Tishkov, deputy director of the Russian Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Geography and a member of the Presidium of the RGS Scientific Council, suggested using the experience of Lake Baikal. He proposed introducing special rules for economic activities in some areas, and a protection regime in others. His proposal was supported by Chilingarov, who suggested holding regular meetings of Arctic scientists in Rosneft’s Arctic Research and Design Centre.


Experts recognised the importance and clear need for the development of mineral deposits on the Arctic continental shelf, and the introduction of new approaches and technology in this work. They also discussed environmental issues that are a priority in Arctic development.