Mainstreaming biodiversity
conservation into Russia's energy
sector policies and operations

Republic of Khakassia. Projects Contribution.

In 2014, a refuge designed to conserve nesting places of rare bird species such as shield duck, great black-headed gull, and avocet, was established in the Trekhozerka forest, Altay district. However, in 2014-2015 the water level in the lakes dropped sharply resulting in significant reductions in the populations of aquatic and semiaquatic birds. The Trekhozerka Forest is a valuable wetland that suits the Ramsar Convention criteria, and an important bird area that, among other things, serves as a significant stopover resting place for aquatic and semiaquatic birds migrating along the Central Asian Flyway.

Coal mining in close vicinity to the Trekhozerka Forest can change the hydrological regimes of the water bodies in this unique area, which, in turn, will result in transformation of ecosystems and degradation of the bird fauna. In view of the above, it was necessary to conduct hydrological and hydrogeological surveys in order to identify what can cause changes in the hydrological regime of the Trekhozerka Forest, and to work out recommendations on how to keep the water level stable at a level sufficient to conserve the biodiversity in the forest.
In 2016, in order to develop recommendations on keeping the water level at an ecologically acceptable level, the Project began hydrological and hydrogeological surveys in the Trekhozerka Forest refuge. The scope of works includes conducting a set of field surveys of the local hydrology and hydrogeology, modelling the water balance of the water bodies, identifying the causes and forecasting changes in the water regimes due to natural reasons and the increasing human impact on the areas adjacent to the forests, and developing recommendations on acceptable impacts of coal mining on the Trekhozerka refuge wetland systems.

© 2019