Journey through the Eastern Mongolian Steppes: A Visual Story

The Eastern Mongolian Steppes represent the most intact large-scale temperate grassland on the planet. Spanning thousands of square kilometers, these steppes feature treeless flat expanses, rolling hills, and various water bodies, sustaining diverse terrestrial and aquatic life forms. Despite harsh semi-arid continental climates with short growing seasons and long, cold winters, the steppes thrive as highly productive ecosystems, supporting rich biodiversity. Dominated by a few grass species, they host diverse fauna species, including millions of Mongolian white-tailed gazelles. Over millennia, nomadic herders and wildlife have coexisted in these steppes, preserving ancient cultures and practices adapted to the challenging environment.

In an effort to showcase the breathtaking landscapes of the Eastern Mongolian Steppes and raise awareness of their global value, Oleg Kugaev, a fellow of the Marion Doenhoff Fellowship of the Michael Succow Foundation, has created a film. Through stunning visuals, viewers are invited to immerse themselves in the vast expanses of this unique landscape.

Recently, the Michael Succow Foundation completed an important project aimed at supporting the nomination of the Eastern Mongolian Steppes for inclusion on the World Heritage list. The nomination dossier was prepared and submitted to the UNESCO World Heritage Centre in January 2024. The evaluation process is scheduled to take place in 2024. If successful, the Eastern Steppes will be inscribed on the list of UNESCO World Heritage sites, recognizing its outstanding universal value.

The release of Oleg Kugaev's video comes at a crucial time in this journey. By showcasing the beauty and importance of the eastern Mongolian steppes, the video seeks to gain support for the nomination process. Through its wonderful images and heartfelt storytelling, the video aims to inspire viewers to appreciate and protect this invaluable natural treasure.