Environmental Initiatives

Cooperation with the World Wildlife Fund

In 2019, MKB joined the Panda Club of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF). The program of the club is to unite the efforts of the Russian business and WWF to preserve nature in Russia. The cooperation of MKB and the World Wildlife Fund is implemented as part of the Bank’s integrated strategy for the development of corporate social and environmental responsibility programs.

The first joint project of MKB and WWF-Russia is aimed at preserving the population of saiga in the territory of the Northwestern Caspian Sea Region. The population of saiga in Russia decreased by almost 100 times over the last 60 years. Besides, the share of male saigas in the population decreased significantly. It was caused by selective hunting due to the demand for horns of male saigas (saiga’s horns are used in traditional oriental medicine). Based on the assessment conducted by WWF-Russia, the population of saigas was just over 5,000 animals in June 2019.


Saiga is a unique representative of the mammoth fauna, most species of which have already died under the influence of changing climate or as a result of hunting. Saiga lives until now, but today the only population of saigas left within Russia is again on the edge of disappearance. Over the centuries-old history of their existence, saigas have become an important link in the biota of drylands. The disappearance of this species will cause significant changes in the scope of natural plants of steppes and semideserts.

The project provides for the organization of winter registration of saigas using quiet drones in December 2019. Field works in the territory of Chernyye Zemli wildlife reserve were performed. The length of flights for photo shootings of family groups was about 3,000 km. Decryption and data processing took three months.

The up-to-date information on the state of the population, gender, and age structure, distribution during the rut, and the dynamics of the population size will enable the development of a scope of measures to preserve the population of saigas in the Caspian Sea Region.

This project provides for financial support of the general coordination of works, manual decryption of photos (about 10,000 photos), data analysis, and development of the methodology for winter registration of saigas.

The results of automated census of the population of saiga in the territory of the Northwestern Caspian Sea Region during the rut.
Territory Area Total number of species / (%)
Chernyye Zemli wildlife reserve Mostly cluster «sapozhok» 2,027 / 32%
Chernyye Zemli wildlife reserve - Stepnoy Wildlife Refuge Mostly cluster «karman» 4,321 / 68%
Total 6,348 / 100%

Cooperation with the ECA green movement for the restoration and preservation of Russian forests

In 2019, MKB became a partner of the ECA green movement and sponsored planting of 10,000 young fir trees and pine trees as part of the Plant Forest project in Malopurginskiy District of the Udmurt Republic. More than 80 persons took part in the promotional event and restored the affected territory.

Since 2010, ECA volunteers planted more than 10 million trees in 47 regions of Russia and created 5,000 school nursery gardens. In 2015, PosadiLes.ru service was created. It allows everyone to plant their tree without leaving the house. With the support of service users, more than 100 hectares of forest was restored in 15 regions of Russia.

Cooperation with the ECA green movement

Custody of the Amur leopard in the Moscow Zoo

MKB signed a cooperation agreement with the Moscow State Zoo for the management of the Amur leopard. Maintenance of the population of Amur leopards is the item on the state agenda. In April 2019, Russian President Vladimir Putin emphasized once again the importance of that task and highly appreciated the success of the project for preserving rare predators and the contribution of the Russian Academy of Science implementing the special project for the protection of animals «Amur Leopard.»

At the present time, Amur leopards are about to die off. It is the rarest of all leopard subspecies: in 2017, there were only 87 animals left in the wildlife of Russia.

Custody of the Amur leopard in the Moscow Zoo