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Russians have utterly destroyed Dzharylhach National Park and two protected wetlands

Monday, 6 November 2023, 13:36

The steppe area of the Dzharylhach National Nature Park and a whole range of other protected areas in Ukraine have been totally destroyed by Russia’s armed aggression.

Source: Ukraine’s Ministry of Environmental Protection and Natural Resources (MEPNR)

Details: To date, 514 nature reserves covering an area of 0.8 million hectares remain occupied. The war has affected over 20% of Ukraine's protected areas.


The MEPNR reported that an entire protected area – the most valuable steppe area of the Dzharylhach National Nature Park – has been destroyed. It covers 1,588 hectares.

Two wetlands of international significance – the Large and Small Kuchuhury Archipelago and the Seven Lighthouses Floodplain – have been virtually destroyed.

A total of 812 nature reserve sites covering a total area of 0.9 million hectares are affected.

The threat of destruction looms over the 2.9 million hectares of the Smarahdova Merezha (Emerald Network) – 160 areas that are part of the European nature network and protected by EU and Council of Europe legislation.

17 wetlands of international significance (protected by the Ramsar Convention), which have this status due to their unique biodiversity, are at risk.

Damage has been caused to the habitats of flora and fauna species listed in the Red Book of Ukraine and the European Red List of Threatened Species of Animals and Plants. [The Red Book of Ukraine is an official national red list of endangered animals, plants and fungi protected by law in Ukraine – ed.]

"This list and the scale of losses may grow, as hostilities are still ongoing in some parts of Ukraine, with others under occupation or awaiting mine clearance," the MEPNR said.

Background: 6 November is the International Day for Preventing the Exploitation of the Environment in War and Armed Conflict.

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