Caspian Sea states agree to tackle oil pollution

The Caspian Sea is a rich source of biodiversity, as well as natural resources including oil and gas

The five countries bordering the Caspian Sea are to introduce an emergency response system to tackle oil pollution under a new United-Nations backed treaty.

Delegates from Iran, Kazakhstan, Russia, Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan have just concluded a meeting in Aktu, Kazakhstan, according to the UN Environment Programme or UNEP.

The oil boom in the region surrounding the Caspian Sea has become increasingly exposed to pollution from oil and gas exploration, exploitation and transport.

Transport of oil and oil products alone accounts for some 10,000 shipping movements every year.

The isolation of the Caspian basin for over two million years and its climatic and salinity gradients have created a unique ecological system with more than 400 endemic species, including 115 species of fish.

Among them are the world famous caviar-bearing Caspian sturgeon and the rare freshwater seal, both of which are threatened by over-exploitation, habitat destruction and pollution.

Caspian Sea States take further steps against oil pollution under UN-backed treaty

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