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Oil and gas development in the Russian Arctic

Dokument - 27 mars, 2012
During the last few years the oil and gas industry growth in the Arctic zone of the Russian Federation has increased. Environmental threats, as well as threats to Indigenous peoples inhabiting the area and their traditional way of living, have grown accordingly.

Intensive development of the oil and gas industry is generally accompanied with large-scale PR campaigns. They are focused on making the local residents believe that the activities related to oil drilling and production are absolutely harmless and will positively contribute to the overall development of the region and its infrastructure. 

Oil and gas field exploration often results in the “monopolization” of the regional economy and politics. Oil companies make agreements with local authorities and law enforcement bodies regarding “special rules of play”, and the rights of local population are herewith drastically shrinking. As a result there are restrictions in mass media freedom and social control, while law enforcement bodies turn a blind eye to evident violations of the law by oil companies. 

Presently, there is no legislative control related to the reimbursement of damage inflicted to the sources of indigenous groups’ living.