NI: Norilsk is not the last Russian disaster in the Arctic


Moscow is turning the Arctic into an environmental issue and, judging by what happened in Norilsk, this is not the last Russian disaster in this region, writes The National Interest, an American analytical publication.


Today, Russia has the largest population beyond the Arctic Circle among the countries of the world. Permafrost thawing is causing serious damage to an already poorly developed infrastructure, causing losses to the authorities.

The recent spill of 20 thousand tons of diesel fuel in Norilsk is just the last of a series of environmental disasters. Of course, this emergency is inferior to the wreck of the Exxon Walds tanker off the coast of Alaska in 1989, when 40 thousand tons of oil spilled from the ship, but the devil is in the details. The reason itself is important because of which the diesel spill occurred, and it is very insidious.

180 thousandth Norilsk recognized as the worst city in Russia in environmental terms. In 2016 there already took place ecological disaster, when the dam of the tailings of the Nadezhda Metallurgical Plant broke through. City enterprises emit 2 million tons of harmful gases into the atmosphere annually. According to NASA estimates, this city is responsible for 1% of global sulfur dioxide emissions.

The city is surrounded by a lunar landscape, smog hangs over it and acid rains regularly. Life expectancy there is 10 years lower than in Moscow, and the level of cancer is 2 times higher than in Russia. Norilsk was a zone of ecological disaster long before the ground under it began to thaw.

Norilsk is a good example of what is wrong with the Russian Arctic. It is located in a valuable region with the world's largest deposits of nickel and palladium, as well as large reserves of copper, cobalt, platinum and coal. But he is saddled with the legacy of the Gulag. The Arctic Council, a group of countries, including the United States, can help Russia solve these problems.

This is only one of the problem points in the north of Russia, but other cities also need help. However, belligerent Russia may abandon it. Then what happened in Norilsk will not be the last environmental disaster in the Arctic.
  • Photos used: https://www.eglin.af.mil/
5 comments
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  1. aleksandrmakedo Offline aleksandrmakedo
    aleksandrmakedo (Dubovitsky Victor Kuzmich) 11 June 2020 17: 20
    +3
    Of course, the council, which will be ruled by the United States, will solve the environmental problems of the Russian Arctic. Without them, we, and everyone else, go nowhere. I even know what will be the first decree worked out by this "advice".
    I wonder how NASA signals its people about the state of the atmosphere in the areas of shale gas and oil production.
    I think satellite sensors are tuned only to the territory of Russia.
  2. Oyo Sarkazmi Offline Oyo Sarkazmi
    Oyo Sarkazmi (Oyo Sarkazmi) 11 June 2020 19: 04
    +1
    The million barrels of oil that spilled into the Gulf of Mexico did not become a disaster. Yes, they spoiled the beaches for several months, the birds died ... But several storms washed up new sand, birds flew in from other places - now no one remembers the "catastrophe".
    And then 20 thousand tons of diesel fuel. Russian Arctic fox.
    1. bonifacius Offline bonifacius
      bonifacius (Alex) 11 June 2020 22: 34
      +2
      The biological activity of the tropics is orders of magnitude higher than the similar ability of the Arctic. Here you have the whole scribe. And remember what kind of penalty BP paid.
  3. Alexey Grigoryev (Alexey Grigoriev) 11 June 2020 19: 08
    +1
    Americans generally need to be silent after they dirtied the Gulf of Mexico.
  4. Sergey Latyshev Offline Sergey Latyshev
    Sergey Latyshev (Serge) 11 June 2020 23: 27
    +2
    Taki Norilsk Nickel does not seem to be a Russian company. Registered offshore, oligarchs share it in London.

    Take yes to fine these foreign owners of billions by 5-10. As the Americans fined the owners of the tanker who spilled oil from the US.
    But alas, weakly ...