Kuril officials propose to create Russian-Japanese nature conservancy area

The Kurilsky state nature reserve administration will offer the Russian Natural Resources and Ecology Ministry to create a nature conservancy area comprising of three Russian territories - the Kurilsky nature reserve and the Malye Kurily and Ostrovnoi nature sites - and Japan's Shiretoko National Park on the Hokkaido Island.

The Kurilsky state nature reserve administration will offer the Russian Natural Resources and Ecology Ministry to create a nature conservancy area comprising of three Russian territories - the Kurilsky nature reserve and the Malye Kurily and Ostrovnoi nature sites - and Japan's Shiretoko National Park on the Hokkaido Island.

Kurilsky nature reserve director Alexander Kisleiko will put forward the proposal at an all-Russia conference of nature reserve and national park heads to be held in Vladivostok on October 4-9 under the chairmanship of Russian Natural Resources and Ecology Minister Sergei Donskoi, says a report published on the nature reserve website.

The Japanese national park Shiretoko is situated on the same-name peninsula in the east of the Japanese island of Hokkaido. The Shiretoko Park was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2005. Kisleiko thinks that the unique nature of the South Kuril Islands deserves to be on the UNESCO World Heritage List too.

The nature reserve administration has discussed the creation of the Kuril-Hokkaido nature conservancy area with Japanese scientists and Japanese Foreign Ministry representative Koji Hirohata during their visa-free visit to Kunashir on August 14-17, 2015. Kisleiko also sent a letter to Hirohata proposing a discussion of this option with relevant Japanese agencies.

"The creation of this complex will make it possible to hold efficient nature conservancy measures on adjoining territories at an international level. We can conserve the populations of fish owl, Japanese crane and other rare species. Future generations will never forgive us if we do not try to do so," Kisleiko said. The formal letter of the nature reserve administration to Japan has been presented for the consideration of the Russian Natural Resources and Ecology Ministry's state nature conservancy policy and regulation department.

Kisleiko also suggested that the Russian Natural Resources and Ecology Ministry adjust the structure of the South Kuril nature conservancy area by merging the Ostrovnoi regional nature site with the federal Kurilsky and Malye Kurily nature reserves. He said a new federal nature reserve, Ostrovnoi, should be created on the Island of Iturup, the Middle Kurils, as a replacement for the regional nature site and be subordinated to the Kurilsky nature reserve as a branch.

Kisleiko has asked the Russian Natural Resources and Ecology Ministry to consider his proposition.

Read more: Russia goes green with new natural reserves>>>

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