Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Help Support EcoWatch

Green Snow Raises Pollution Concerns in Russian City

Popular
ND News / YouTube screenshot

Pollution is turning the snow green in the Russian city of Pervouralsk, the latest in a series of incidents fueling growing concerns about the environmental health of the country that could threaten President Vladimir Putin's popularity, The Independent reported Monday.

One video shared by ND News Feb. 15 shows a patch of green snow outside a pre-school close to a local chrome plant that residents blame for the phenomenon.


"The children got sick, they had a cough and their skin turned red, with rashes on their faces," resident Natalya Solovey, who shot the video, told ND News, as Euronews reported.

Зеленые сосульки и снег напугали жителей Первоуральска www.youtube.com

Pictures have also shown acid green icicles hanging from buildings, according to The Independent.

The chrome factory denied that their activities posed any risk to residents, according to a statement from spokesman Vsevolod Oreshkin shared by The Independent:

"It's a routine situation for residents that should not cause alarm. Does not threaten lives or health of adults and children. It's Pervouralsk. There are a whole variety of industrial enterprises here. If we take samples of snow in any place we will see a multitude of dangerous substances."

However, a number of incidents outlined in The Independent indicate that Russian citizens are getting tired of accepting pollution as a fact of life.

1. Black Snow: Residents in the coal-mining region of Siberia have been posting videos on social media this month of mountains of black snow. The Kuzbass region, where some of the videos were filmed, has higher than national rates of cancer, tuberculosis and childhood cerebral palsy, and a life expectancy three to four years below the national average, The Guardian reported.

"It's harder to find white snow than black snow during the winter," Ecodefense member Vladimir Slivyak said, as The Guardian reported. "There is a lot of coal dust in the air all the time. When snow falls, it just becomes visible. You can't see it the rest of the year, but it is still there."

Toxic black snow covers streets in Siberia www.youtube.com

2. Sibai Smog: The town of Sibai in the Urals has been choking on smog since November, and residents have decided to sue a local copper mine, The Moscow Times reported Feb. 20.

"Some Sibai residents have begun to directly appeal to the courts with demands that the Uchalinsky ore processing plant compensate the damage done to their health," Governor of the Republic of Bashkortostan Rady Khabirov told the state-run RIA Novosti agency, as reported by The Moscow Times.

3. Nationwide Protests: In early February, thousands took to the streets across Russia to protest plans by Moscow to dump overflowing trash in surrounding regions, The Moscow Times reported. The protest, called "Russia is Not a Dump," attracted the participation of 26 regions, according to organizers.

"The authorities have excluded us from the entire process and haven't answered any of our questions," protest organizer and local deputy Ilya Sviridov told The Moscow Times. "We are simply demanding dialogue."

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

By Michael Svoboda

The enduring pandemic will make conventional forms of travel difficult if not impossible this summer. As a result, many will consider virtual alternatives for their vacations, including one of the oldest forms of virtual reality – books.

Read More Show Less
Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility on Thursday accused NOAA of ignoring its own scientists' findings about the endangerment of the North Atlantic right whale. Lauren Packard / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

By Julia Conley

As the North Atlantic right whale was placed on the International Union for Conservation of Nature's list of critically endangered species Thursday, environmental protection groups accusing the U.S. government of bowing to fishing and fossil fuel industry pressure to downplay the threat and failing to enact common-sense restrictions to protect the animals.

Read More Show Less
Pexels

By Beth Ann Mayer

Since even moderate-intensity workouts offer a slew of benefits, walking is a good choice for people looking to stay healthy.

Read More Show Less
Much of Eastern Oklahoma, including most of Tulsa, remains an Indian reservation, the Supreme Court ruled on Thursday. JustTulsa / CC BY 2.0

Much of Eastern Oklahoma, including most of Tulsa, remains an Indian reservation, the Supreme Court ruled on Thursday.

Read More Show Less
The Firefly Watch project is among the options for aspiring citizen scientists to join. Mike Lewinski / Wikimedia Commons / CC by 2.0

By Tiffany Means

Summer and fall are great seasons to enjoy the outdoors. But if you're already spending extra time outside because of the COVID-19 pandemic, you may be out of ideas on how to make fresh-air activities feel special. Here are a few suggestions to keep both adults and children entertained and educated in the months ahead, many of which can be done from the comfort of one's home or backyard.

Read More Show Less
People sit at the bar of a restaurant in Austin, Texas, on June 26, 2020. Texas Governor Greg Abbott ordered bars to be closed by noon on June 26 and for restaurants to be reduced to 50% occupancy. Coronavirus cases in Texas spiked after being one of the first states to begin reopening. SERGIO FLORES / AFP via Getty Images

The coronavirus may linger in the air in crowded indoor spaces, spreading from one person to the next, the World Health Organization acknowledged on Thursday, as The New York Times reported. The announcement came just days after 239 scientists wrote a letter urging the WHO to consider that the novel coronavirus is lingering in indoor spaces and infecting people, as EcoWatch reported.

Read More Show Less

Trending

A never-before-documented frog species has been discovered in the Peruvian highlands and named Phrynopus remotum. Germán Chávez

By Angela Nicoletti

The eastern slopes of the Andes Mountains in central Perú are among the most remote places in the world.

Read More Show Less