Measures to protect the arctic seas from oil pollution, which develop in the Arctic Council, are too abstract and do not impose any liability on companies operating in the region, according to representatives of Greenpeace and other environmental organizations.
Minister of Natural Resources and Environmental Protection in Russia, USA, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden, February 5-6, will meet in the Swedish town of Jukkasjärvi. The participants, in particular, to discuss the draft general plan of cooperation for the protection of the Arctic seas from oil spills.
A draft version of the document, which Greenpeace gave Reuters, suggests the creation of "national systems of responding quickly and effectively to incidents of oil pollution," but does not define the necessary components of such a system. According to environmentalists, the draft decision "is written so extensively that its practical value in increasing the level of preparedness (for oil spills) is extremely low."
In particular, the agreement, which, as the agency will not be legally binding, provides for simplification of movement of specialized equipment and vessels through the maritime boundaries and joint exercises. Final approval of the document of the country should be in May.
In June 2012, Greenpeace International has announced a campaign to collect signatures in support of the Arctic from industrial development and to support the idea of creating a global reserve there. Environmentalists say that the industry is not ready to work under extreme conditions of the polar region. That fall, several major oil and gas companies, Shell, BP and "Gazprom", postponed their projects to produce hydrocarbons in the Arctic shelf, or rejected them.