2012 / 09 / 14

NGO SPOK Makes Proposals for the Draft of Main Objectives for Socio-economic Policy of the Government of the Republic of Karelia until 2017.

The Karelia Regional Nature Conservancy SPOK has responded to the invitation of the republic’s leader, Alexander Khudilainen, to propose additions and changes to the draft of the Main Objectives of the Socio-economic Policy of the Government of the Republic of Karelia for the Period up to 2017. These objectives are the basis for the Strategy for the Socio-economic Development of the Region for the next five years. NGO SPOK has appealed to the republic’s leadership to take the initiative to protect all the Specially Protected Natural Areas (SPNAs) specified in the Land Use Plan of the Republic of Karelia from commercial development and other types of exposure that are harmful to nature until 2014. NGO SPOK also considers it necessary to financially and logistically ensure the creation of the new SPNAs that are included in the regional Land Use Plan, since an overwhelming part of the planned SPNAs are natural ecosystems, landscapes, and complexes that have priority protection under RF law. Moreover, NGO SPOK has suggested removing oversight of the use and conservation of natural resources from the executive branch of the republic and setting up a separate organ of the government of Karelia, for example, a nature conservation committee.

According to the nature conservation organization, implementation of these suggestions will do the following:  delineate the usage of areas planned for forest conservation and of areas suitable for intensive forest use; shape government nature conservation policy; avoid nature conservation conflicts in the timber processing and mining sectors, which significantly impact the image of the region; diversify the economy in the development plan for non-timber forest uses in protected forests (SPNAs); enlarge and consolidate areas for the enjoyment of nature and the development of ecotourism; preserve the natural and cultural heritage of the region as the basis for regeneration of the Russian North; have a multidimensional effect on the development of remote areas by promoting nature conservation and the development of tourism; and develop cross-border cooperation in the conservation and sustainable use of the remaining tracts of northern European intact forests. It will also draw into the discussion of nature conservancy issues a significant number of concerned rural populations and municipal administrations involved in the traditional uses of natural resources.


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