Interactive map charts Russia’s environmental problem areas

Nov 26, 2012
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The Russian Geographic Society and news agency RIA Novosti have created a map of ecological hot spots in Russia, The St. Petersburg Times reports.

 The project, which grew out of frustration that authorities were ignoring environmental problems, allows visitors to submit issues in their areas. Launched in October, it has already received “dozens” of reports, the newspaper writes.

 

Air pollution is one of several environmental factors mapped on a new platform from RIA Novosti.

Ultimately, the project’s organizers will assess “a range of factors,” including air and water quality, the health of ecosystems, waste handling, corporate accountability, and the status of threatened species to assign regions environmental ratings.

“The officials in these regions will have a hard time explaining why they have been lax in dealing with these issues. I am convinced this project has huge potential, and could really improve the situation,” one environmental journalist said at the map’s launch event.

Russia has seen the birth of a new environmental movement in the past few years, spurred largely by the armies of volunteers who helped fight the horrific forest fires of 2010.


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Transitions Online

Transitions Online (www.tol.org) is an Internet magazine that covers political, social, cultural, and economic issues in the former communist countries of Europe and Central Asia. The magazine has a strong network of local contributors, who provide valuable insight into events in the region’s 29 countries.
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