Nord Stream gas pipeline seals fate of one of the worlds last "real" nomadic peoples!
Reindeer herders are endangered:
The Nord Stream Baltic Sea pipeline seals the fate of one of the worlds last "real" nomadic peoples: Due to the massive construction project on their grounds, the Nenets are now forced to finally give up their traditional ways of life and economy, which they had kept up all year round. This was announced by the Society for Threatened Peoples (STP) on the occasion of the official opening of the gas pipeline from Russia to Germany, which was celebrated in Lubmin near Greifswald by Chancellor Angela Merkel and Russian President Dmitri Medvedev.
"A large amount of the gas that flows to Germany comes from areas where the Nenets live," said the STP's expert on the CIS states, Sarah Reinke, in Berlin on Tuesday. "Around 2,500 square kilometers of original nature have been destroyed already and at least 3,000 more will follow. The Nenets were offered compensation money and new infrastructure, but they were not asked whether they would like to change their lives and the lives of their children completely. Now there will be no alternative for them except to try and get a job with Gazprom."
Around 4,700 Nenets are living as nomads on the Yamal Peninsula, where 61 percent of the gas reserves and 15 percent of the oil deposits in Russia are located. For the reindeer, there were intact pastures with a high level of biodiversity. In winter, the Nenets drove their flocks south, towards the forests, to protect them from the cold winds of the tundra. In spring, they moved back to the Middle of the peninsula, where the reindeer calves are born. In summer, the flocks kept to the coast, where the wind kept off the mosquito swarms. The reindeer provided for food and clothing of the Yamal-Nenets. They were their livelihood.
Most of the approximately 41,300 Nenets live in the Nenets Autonomous District, the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous District and in Taimyr. Many of the nomads who are in search of a job in the city are suffering from alcoholism and the loss of their relationship with the country. The life expectancy of indigenous people is 15 years less than the Russian average - which is only 60 years for males anyway.
Gazprom is mainly responsible for both the gas production and for the operation of the Nord Stream gas pipeline. The mega-group holds a 51 percent stake in Nord Stream. The German energy companies Wintershall Holding and E.ON Ruhrgas AG hold 15.5 percent each, while the Dutch N.V. Nederlandse Gasunie and the French energy supplier GDF SUEZ hold nine percent each. The STP had repeatedly tried to convince the German companies to engage in a dialogue with the indigenous people.
In 2010, Gazprom made a profit of 23.7 billion Euros. The group holds a share of 25 percent of the European gas business. The gas exports finance almost half of Russia's state budget.