Ecology Ministry Faces Tall Task of Russian Cleanup

By Burke, ustin | The Christian Science Monitor, February 2, 1993 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

Ecology Ministry Faces Tall Task of Russian Cleanup

Burke, ustin, The Christian Science Monitor

MORE than seven decades of neglect have turned Russia into an ecological disaster zone, and environmental officials admit the problems are so numerous they cannot cope with them all.

The government currently is working out an ecological security program to neutralize the affects of environmental contamination, Ecology Minister Viktor Danilov-Danilyan said at a news conference last week. Although 4 billion rubles (about $7 million) are planned to go toward cleanup efforts, little can be achieved given Russia's economic woes, he said.

"It's hard to change our methods of operation when the overall system is in such a state of collapse," Mr. Danilov-Danilyan said. "We can observe many more problems than we can solve."

The problems are mainly the result of inefficient management of industry and agriculture under the centralized planning system, according to an Ecology Ministry press release. The domination of military considerations in the former Soviet Union's economy also contributed to environmental problems.

The biggest environmental dangers are currently posed by oil refineries, chemical weapons production, and unsafe nuclear plant operations, the press release continued. But officials stress problems can be found in virtually every corner of the country.

For example, the water in one-third of all old underground reservoirs is unfit for drinking, Alexei Yablokov, presidential adviser for environmental and heath affairs, was quoted as saying by the Tass news agency.

The nation's arable lands are in "critical" condition, the ministry press release said. About 100 million acres out of a total 450 million acres have been rendered unusable because of industrialization or over-irrigation. About 90 million acres have dangerously high saline levels, and about 110 acres are affected by erosion.

MEANWHILE, the danger posed by toxic and radioactive waste is "enormous," the press release added.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Cite this article

Cited article

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

Ecology Ministry Faces Tall Task of Russian Cleanup


Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?