Mammoth museum and permafrost complex to appear in Krasnoyarsk
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Mammoth museum and permafrost complex to appear in Krasnoyarsk

January 19, 2021

The possible creation of a museum complex of permafrost and mammoth of international level in the Krasnoyarsk became known after the regional parliament session in 2020.

#ARCTIC. #SIBERIA. THIS IS TAIMYR. According to the Deputy of the Legislative Assembly of the Krasnoyarsk region, the head of the Siberian Federal University’s Arctic comprehensive study department, candidate of economic sciences Yury Zakharinsky, such a museum should be in Siberia, in Krasnoyarsk, as the capital of the Arctic region:

 “Permafrost occupies over 65 percent of the region’s territory. It has a direct impact on all economic activities: roads, houses and industrial facilities cannot be built and operated here as it is done in the southern regions. And the lack of a correct understanding of how permafrost soils behave in different conditions can be costly for nature and society. Without studying it, it is difficult to develop industry with minimal risks to the environment”.

For centuries, objects of material culture have also been preserved in permafrost – part of the rich history of those indigenous peoples who still live in the northern and arctic territories of Siberia. The arctic climate provides good preservation of archaeological sites. Thus, on the territory of the region, the remains of representatives of the mammoth fauna were found, for example, the Sopkarga mammoth, known as mammoth Zhenya. His remains were found in Taimyr in 2012, now they are kept in the Dudinka Museum of Local Lore.

It is curious that the woolly mammoth lived not only in the north of Siberia, in the coldest eras it penetrated to the territory of modern China. Finds of his remains are very typical for the south of the Krasnoyarsk region. The remains of his ancestor, the so-called steppe mammoth, a ten-ton giant, are also found here.

“It is very interesting that, according to genetic studies, Siberia is the birthplace of the woolly mammoth, it appeared here about 450 thousand years ago and later spread to North America. It is important that residents of the Krasnoyarsk region, Russia and other countries could get acquainted with such exhibits, the history of their discovery and, in general, with the history of the development of nature and the most ancient stages of the development of the Siberian Arctic”, the deputy stressed.

It is reported that today only a few museum complexes abroad can acquaint visitors with the world of permafrost, with engineering problems associated with its melting, with the world of the ice age. These are the Norwegian Glacier Museum, the Mammoth Museum in Switzerland and one of the expositions of the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry of the United States. There are three such complexes in Russia, and two of them are located in the Krasnoyarsk region – the local history complex Museum of Permafrost in Igarka and the Mammoth Museum in Khatanga.

“The museum in Igarka, despite the high value of the exhibits presented there, is accessible today only to a small number of visitors – after all, for the bulk of residents and guests of the region, Igarka is a remote northern city. And the Mammoth Museum in the Taimyr village of Khatanga, two thousand kilometers from Krasnoyarsk, can hardly be called a museum”, the scientist and politician thinks.

In conclusion, Yury Zakharinsky noted that the appearance of a museum complex of international level in Krasnoyarsk would be an excellent gift to its residents for the 400th anniversary of the city:

“Such a museum will provide an opportunity to get acquainted with the harsh but unique nature of the Arctic, its history and modern problems, and will also allow guests of the city to better understand our culture, to make them not indifferent to what the inhabitants of Siberia value so high”.

Text: Mikhail Tuaev, Photo: Krasnoyarsk administration

January 19, 2021

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