Russia, Komi Republic

At the Eastern borders of Europe, along the Ural Mountains, there are the continents largest unfragmented virgin forests. These boreal forests were threatened by clear cutting and oil spoils in 1994. Park officials didn't receive salary for months. Greenpeace, contracted by federal government, has worked together with local group and scientists to prepare the first nominations of Russia for World Heritage Sites. The virgin Komi Forests was added to the World Heritage Sites in 1995. Since than, it received donations from Switzerland and Norway.

The Virgin Komi Forests cover 3.28 million hectares of tundra and mountain tundra in the Urals, as well as one of the most extensive areas of still virgin boreal forest in Europe. This vast area of conifers, aspens, birches, peat bogs, rivers and natural lakes, have been monitored and studied for more than 50 years. They provide valuable evidence of the natural processes affecting biodiversity in the taiga.

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