Sergei Ivanov: We must clean the Arctic and other regions of the country

Speaking at the first meeting of the organizing committee on preparations for the Year of Ecology in Russia in 2017 on Friday, Chief of Staff of the Presidential Executive Office Sergei Ivanov emphasized the need to clean the Arctic and eliminate the damage done to other regions of the country.

“One more important task is to clean the Arctic. As you may know, we’ve already started this work on Franz Joseph Land and on Wrangel Island. We must also deal with the consequences of the damage done to the nature of other regions in the country in the past few decades,” RIA Novosti quoted Ivanov as saying.

He said this year volunteer crews from the Russian Geographical Society are preparing to clean the islands in the Gulf of Finland — for the first time since 1945.

President Vladimir Putin declared 2017 the Year of Ecology in Russia. The organizing committee is headed by Ivanov and includes heads of federal executive bodies, presidential envoys in the federal districts, regional governors, and representatives of scientific institutions and public organizations.

RIA Novosti reports that the main activities in preparing for and holding the Year of Ecology will include household waste management, development of specially protected territories, preservation of rare animals and reservoirs, protection of the unique ecosystems of Lake Baikal, preservation and restoration of forests, and maintaining eco security in the Arctic.