Pasvik Nature Reserve opens a visitor center
The Pasvik Nature Reserve has opened a visitor center in Nikel, Murmansk Region. The center will promote environmental education, RIA Novosti reported. The opening ceremony was attended by Special Presidential Representative for Environmental Protection, Ecology and Transport Sergei Ivanov, Minister of Natural Resources and Environment Sergei Donskoi, Murmansk Region Governor Marina Kovtun, reserve staff members and environmentalists.
"It is symbolic that we are opening this visitor center in the Year of the Environment. It's a very good solution — a fine-looking visitor center that stands out in the city. I'm sure it will attract people; we just need to create the atmosphere," Sergei Donskoi said.
The modern visitor center has an area of more than 800 square meters. There are two small conference rooms inside, a big room for 85 people, as well as rooms for exhibitions, a museum, living quarters for specialists, and the staff's rooms. The visitor center will host scientific forums and environmental events.
According to Sergei Ivanov, the center is a result of public-private partnership in the environmental sphere: the Nornickel company has invested more than 70 million rubles into the project.
Created in 1992, the Pasvik Nature Reserve is part of the cross-border Pasvik Inari Trilateral Park. The reserve is located in the valley of the Paz (Paatsjoki) River, which flows from Lake Inari in Finland, runs across Russian territory and discharges into the Barents Sea in Norway. The reserve was established to preserve and study the northernmost conifer forests in Europe, vast wetlands of world importance and water fowl, and to comprehensively monitor the northern ecosystems.