Wildlife and environment
10,000 tons of garbage cleared from Franz Joseph Land, Novaya Zemlya
© Maria Gavrilo

10,000 tons of garbage cleared from Franz Joseph Land, Novaya Zemlya

In 2015, about 10,000 metric tons of waste from manufacturing and consumption has been cleared from Franz Joseph Land and the Novaya Zemlya archipelago.

"In total, about 8,800 metric tons of garbage has been taken away from Franz Joseph Land. Work started in 2014 has been continued on Severny Island of Novaya Zemlya," said the press service of the Russian Arctic National Park. "In all, over 1,200 metric tons of various waste was collected and recycled on Severny Island, including 100 metric tons of oil sludge."

Russian Arctic Director Roman Yershov said the 2016 budget didn't stipulate any funding for further eliminating the damage caused to the archipelago. Still, five years of clean-up efforts have removed waste from the worst affected areas of Franz Joseph Land.

"We have removed all garbage, including oil product storage in the coastal area, which is the most vulnerable to erosion and was under the threat of environmental disaster," Mr Yershov said.

Russian Arctic authorities said that a geological and environmental survey had to be conducted to assess how much work remained to be done.

"However, it is already obvious that further waste clean-up is needed on Graham Bell and Hoffman islands and also on Rudolf Island, the northernmost part of Eurasia," the press service reports.