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Russia Shrinks by the Size of a Small Country Every Year -- Geology Expert

The process is connected with melting of the permafrost area and eroding of the northern seas’ coasts, a scientist says

NOVOSIBIRSK, November 9 (TASS) - Due to melting of the permafrost area and to eroding of the northern seas’ coasts Russia is losing every year the territory, which is equal to the territory of Andorra (468 square kilometers), and the process cannot be stopped, a scientist of the Siberian department of the Russian Academy of Sciences told TASS on Monday.

"Every year due to melting of the permafrost along coasts of northern seas we are losing a territory, comparable with the territory of Andorra," the scientist said. "The shores in the south also change due to eroding, but the process is much quicker in the north."

He explained, the coastal line is destroyed to the distance of one-two to ten meters, which depends on many factors, including the character of the coastal line, the storms and on the term of ice covering seas.

The permafrost border in Russia is now moving rapidly northwards.

"This border, where our scientists are monitoring it, for the past 40 years has moved 30 kilometers to the north, which is quite a lot," he said.

The melting would mean further rise of temperatures, thus, for example, if the climate norm is exceeded by 1-2 degrees, the warm fertile land in Russia’s southern Stavropol or Krasnodar will have a shortage of water, and agriculture would have to move northwards to the level of Voronezh.

"Most favourable territories will thus move 200-300 kilometers to the north," the scientist said.

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