MOSCOW, November 24 (Itar-Tass) — During the coming year, Russia will add another, sixth, nuclear icebreaker to serve the Northern Sea Route, Head of Atomflot’s office in Moscow Stanislav Golovinsky said on Thursday.
“With the growing cargo flow in the Arctic, in 2012 we shall start using a nuclear icebreaker which has been in reserve until now,” he said. “It will be the sixth vessel of the class, which will serve the Northern Sea Route.”
The icebreaker which will resume working is called the Soviet Union, and it will keep the name while working in the Arctic, Golovinsky said at the round table, which topic was The Arctic Transport System as Fundamental Factor of the Region’s Development.
“No, we are not changing its name,” he said.
The fleet of nuclear icebreakers solves state objectives, the specialist said. The most important of them are emergency and rescue missions if needed, participation in works to set borders of the shelf, which in fact is stating borders of Russia’s economic zone. Besides, Golovinsky said, “jointly with meteorologists we monitor the weather, and also we bring and return the North Pole expeditions, fulfill tasks from the defense ministry in support of the Navy in northern seas.”
Russia’s icebreaking fleet has been involved in commercial work.
“Our objective is to have the fleet of nuclear icebreakers earn its own living, but we do not raise the tariffs, on the contrary – we lower them due to growing demand,” Golovinsky said adding that “we have managed to double commercial revenues over three years’ time.”