The environment in the Republic of Karelia is generally in favorable conditions. Geographic situation and landscape peculiarities make the nature of the republic especially sensitive to technogenic loads.
At the moment ecological situation is rather stable and has no tendencies to become worse. Relatively high degree of pollution is in main industrial centers
of Petrozavodsk, Segezha, Kostomuksha, the settlement of Nadvoitsy, where large enterprises of pulp and paper industry are located. They are the main reasons for nature pollution.
The territory of the republic has a well-developed water net related to the basins of the White and Baltic seas. The main elements of the hydrographic net of Karelia are lakes, rivers, reservoirs, swamps. The average total flowing of the Karelian rivers is 56 cubic kilometers per year. Karelia is rich in resources of fresh water - 70 thousand cubic meters per a citizen a year. Total resources of surface waters are 195 cubic meters. They are characterized by poor mineralisation and weak level of self-purification. Recently the water situation has been rather stable. For today the most important problem is
purification of sewage of storing lake of AO "Karelian ore". To control the water situation the long termed ecological monitoring has been arranged. 78% of sewage is subjected to total biological purification. The decreasing of water pollution has been noted including those determined by international agreements. There are 122 biological purification systems in the republic, their total capacity is 324 mln. cubic meters. The average load for purification equipment reaches 51%.
23 sewage purification equipment have been put into practice for the recent 5 years.
The territorial program has been worked out to improve ecological situation in the Baltic sea basin. The total cost was 38,1 mln. rbl. in 1997.
To improve the ecological situation the most important issue in the republic is atmosphere pollution decreasing. They decreased for 33,3 thousand tons in comparison with
last year data..
The main pollution substances are sulphurous gas, solids, nitric double oxide.
The set of preserved territories is being arranged in the republic.
Preseverd fund makes 957,5 hectares or 5,3% of the total republican territory. National park area makes 294600 hectares or 1,6% of the total republican territory.
The total area of specially preserved territories makes 2 man 287 000 hectares or 12,7% including forests.
There are two nature reserves on the territory of the republic, they are "Kivatch", "Kostomukshsky", two national parks "Paanayarvi" and "Vodlosersky", 46 preserves, 108 nature monuments.
Besides there is unique historical and nature-landscape territory "Vallam", historic - architectural and ethnographic museum-preserve "Kizhi"
and other objects of nature preserved status.
The nature reserve "Kostomukshsky" is part of the international reserve "Friendship" National park "Paanayarvi" is included into all-world list of nature heritage UNESCO. The problems being considered of including the national park "Vodlosersky in this list.
The national park "Ladozhsye skerries" is under consideration, too.
Radioactive pollution didn`t exceed phone values on the territory of Karelia in 1997.
The decrease of hunting resources was stooped by taking decisive measures- the control over obeying the animal world law and struggling against poaching.
The most widely spread are elk, northern deer, bear, wild-boar, hare, squirrel, wolf; birds are wood-grouse,
black-grouse, hazel-grouse, partridge.