JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russian Arctic leader warns of ‘dramatic’ climate change impact; Head of remote Yakutia region expresses concern about effects of rising temperatures” – Financial Times/ Henry Foy

Map of Arctic Highlighting Permafrost, adapted from image at nasa.gov

“The head of Russia’s largest Arctic territory has warned of ‘very dramatic’ impacts from climate change … Moscow comes under increasing pressure …. [with climate] emerg[ing] as an important domestic issue … due to … large-scale melting of permafrost in the north of the country and temperature increases … outpac[ing] global averages. … creat[ing] serious knock-on effects for Russia, including mass wildfires and major flooding. ‘The outcomes of climate change are very dramatic … It is too early to even say that we have already experienced all the effects,’ Aysen Nikolaev, head of the federal Russian republic of Yakutia, told the Financial Times. ‘Our main goal is to recognise those outcomes and try to mitigate the most negative …’ “

Yakutia is Russia’s largest region but has fewer than a million people. Roughly 40% of Yakutia lies inside the Arctic Circle.  Its 2,500 km-long coastline runs along half of Russia’s portion of the Northern sea route, which seeks to connect Europe and Asia via the Arctic Ocean.

Also called the Sakha Republic, the region produces 30% of the annual global output of gemstones, including nearly all of Russia’s diamond output.

[scroll down for adjustable map] … [permafrost graphic is from an earlier year]

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