JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia’s Richest Man Owns More Melting Arctic Than Anyone” – Bloomberg/ Yuliya Fedorinova, Laura Millan Lombrana

Cartoon Sun and Thermometer, adapted from cdc.gov

“Vladimir Potanin’s sprawling Siberian mining operations make him the billionaire most exposed to the permafrost crisis.” “Vladimir Potanin, one of the [world’s] 50 richest people … stood awkwardly on … Siberian tundra near … remote mining city … Norilsk. … less than a week since a spill[,] … one of Russia’s worst [Arctic] disasters …, caused … by an aging […]

» Read more

Emergency situation: the slow-moving tragedy of the Russian Arctic

Map of Arctic Highlighting Permafrost, adapted from image at nasa.gov

Melting permafrost, oil spills, collapsing infrastructure, abandoned towns: Russia’s far north is heading for social, economic and ecological disaster. (opendemocracy.net – Sofia Gavrilova – August 27, 2020) Sofia Gavrilova is a geographer and works in the Leibniz Institute for Regional Geography, Leipzig. [Text with photos opendemocracy.net/en/odr/russia-arctic-monotowns/] “The asbestos factory closed last year. The crushed stone plant is closing this year. […]

» Read more

JRL NEWSWATCH: “Siberia’s ‘gateway to the underworld’ grows as record heat wave thaws permafrost” – Science Magazine/ Richard Stone

Cartoon Sun and Thermometer, adapted from cdc.gov

“… Known to locals as the ‘gateway to the underworld,’ Batagay is … [earth’s] largest thaw slump …. Once just a gully … the scar has expanded … as … permafrost thaws and meltwater carries off … sediment. Now more than 900 meters wide, it epitomizes the vulnerability of permafrost in the Arctic …. Outbursts of pent-up methane gas in […]

» Read more

JRL NEWSWATCH: “An oil spill in Russia’s Arctic exposes risks for Moscow’s Far North plans” – Washington Post/ Isabelle Khurshudyan, Andrew Freedman

Map of Arctic Highlighting Permafrost, adapted from image at nasa.gov

“Thawing permafrost in the rapidly warming region leaves Moscow’s ambitious Arctic expansion proposals literally on shaky ground.” “… [S]urg[ing] … climate change in interior Russia – more than three times the global average – is throwing new risks in the way of … Putin’s Far North agenda, among his top domestic initiatives. A key danger is … more infrastructure atop […]

» Read more

RUSSIALINK: “Melting Arctic Permafrost Threatens Russian Energy Firms’ Bottom Line – Morgan Stanley” – Moscow Times

File Photo of Polar Bear on Snow with Bare Ground in the Background, adapted from image at nasa.gov with photo credit to U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service/Eric Regehr

Rapidly melting Arctic permafrost poses the greatest threat to major Russian energy producers’ infrastructure and financial indicators, according to a new Morgan Stanley report […]

» Read more

Siberia’s ‘Poles Of Cold’ Are Obliterating Heat Records, And Alarming Climate Scientists

Cartoon Sun and Thermometer, adapted from cdc.gov

.. The rapid pace of warming has stunned climate scientists, despite years of gradually rising temperatures. […]

» Read more

JRL NEWSWATCH: “The Far-Reaching Consequences of Siberia’s Climate-Change-Driven Wildfires” – Smithsonian Magazine/ Theresa Machemer

Map of Arctic Highlighting Permafrost, adapted from image at nasa.gov

“Smoke from the blazes is now reaching the West Coast of the United States.” “… [S]moke from the fires … spans over 1,000 miles … causing hazy skies [in] the northwestern United States …. Permafrost is rich in organic material that froze before it could completely decompose. Melting permafrost releases greenhouse gases on top of the pollution released by the […]

» Read more

JRL NEWSWATCH: “Tie for warmest 12-month period globally as Siberia sizzles (Update)” – PhysOrg/ Marlowe Hood

Cartoon Sun and Thermometer, adapted from cdc.gov

“Temperatures soared 10 degrees Celsius above average across much of permafrost-laden Siberia last month …. Earth’s average surface temperature for July 2019-June 2020 was 1.3C above pre-industrial levels …. In the Arctic … an hourly temperature record for June … was set on the 21st near Verkhoyansk in northeastern Russia …. [P]reviously registered Arctic hourly highs in 1969 and 1973 […]

» Read more

JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russian Arctic sets ‘fantastical’ heat records: weather chief” – AFP

Cartoon Sun and Thermometer, adapted from cdc.gov

“The Russian Arctic set record temperatures in June that sparked abnormal tundra fires … Russia’s weather service [director] said … blaming climate change for … ‘fantastical’ anomalies. Russia’s northern territories, including parts of Yakutia region which borders the Arctic ocean, have faced a heat wave … with some districts declaring a state of emergency. … He noted one record in […]

» Read more

JRL NEWSWATCH: “Arctic Circle’s record temperatures heighten global warming concerns” – Financial Times/ Leslie Hook, Max Seddon

Cartoon Sun and Thermometer, adapted from cdc.gov

“Wild anomalies such as the 38C recorded in northern Russia this week underline climate change threat.” “… [N]orthern Russia has produced the highest temperature ever recorded inside the Arctic Circle …. [R]esidents of Verkhoyansk, north-east of Siberia in … Yakutia … have … been sunbathing in a town that at other times of the year shares the record as the […]

» Read more

RUSSIALINK: “Moscow Breaks 70-Year Heat Record” – Moscow Times

Cartoon Sun and Thermometer, adapted from cdc.gov

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – June 17, 2020) Moscow experienced its hottest June 17 in more than half a century after temperatures hit 29.6 degrees Celsius Wednesday. Russia’s Hydrometeorology Center said that beat the previous record of 29.4 C set on the same day in 1956, Interfax reported. It added that Wednesday’s temperatures were still on track to break a […]

» Read more

JRL NEWSWATCH: “Siberia’s persistent, freakishly mild weather is reverberating around the world” – Washington Post/ Andrew Freedman, Isabelle Khurshudyan

Cartoon Sun and Thermometer, adapted from cdc.gov

“The planet just had its warmest May, continuing a streak from 2014.” “… Siberia … has seen persistently extreme temperatures since the winter … [leading] to a damaging Arctic oil spill, spark[ing] early outbreaks of large wildfires and help[ing] vault global temperatures to new milestones. … Permafrost thawing across Siberia … has caused widespread problems such as buckled roads, collapsed […]

» Read more

Who Will Pay For Russia’s Unprecedented Oil Spill?

Map of Arctic Highlighting Permafrost, adapted from image at nasa.gov

(Oilprice.com – Alex Kimani – June 11, 2020) Five days ago, Russia suffered its worst oil spill in modern history after a fuel storage tank owned by Russian nickel and palladium mining company, Nornickel, collapsed and spilled 21,000 tonnes (about 158,000 barrels) of diesel into the nearby Ambarnaya river outside the Siberian city of Norilsk. The accident–which has drawn comparisons […]

» Read more

JRL NEWSWATCH: “The massive Norilsk fuel spill could be linked to permafrost thaw, a growing threat to Arctic infrastructure” – Arctic Today / Melody Schreiber

Map of Arctic Highlighting Permafrost, adapted from image at nasa.gov

“Infrastructure built on permafrost needs to be better monitored, experts and officials say.” “… [O]ne of the largest ever oil spills in the Russian Arctic may have been caused in part by permafrost thaw, according to the [polluting] company …. Experts … long warned that … [without] precautionary steps … such thaw could cause[] billions of dollars in damage to […]

» Read more

JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia says has stopped spread of Arctic fuel spill” – AFP

Map of Arctic Highlighting Permafrost, adapted from image at nasa.gov

“Russia has … contain[ed] a massive diesel spill into [an Arctic] river … the emergencies ministry [stated] … Environmentalists said the oil spill, which took place [a week earlier] … was the worst such accident ever in the Arctic region. … [A] diesel reservoir collapsed at a power station outside the northern Siberian city of Norilsk[ owned by a subsidiary […]

» Read more

JRL NEWSWATCH: “Diesel Spill In Russian Arctic Could Be Putin’s Exxon Valdez” – Forbes/ Ariel Cohen

Map of Arctic Highlighting Permafrost, adapted from image at nasa.gov

“… Putin ordered a state of emergency … in the Taymyr region near the Arctic Ocean, after 20,000 tons (150,000 barrels) of diesel fuel spilled from a Russian power plant into … soil and a nearby river. The accident occurred in the Siberian city … Norilsk … [T]he plant’s fuel reservoir collapsed into thawing permafrost, releasing its contents. Diesel is […]

» Read more

JRL NEWSWATCH: “Tanker crosses Russian Arctic route without icebreaker assistance; Commercial shipping on the Northern Sea Route starts earlier than ever before.” – Barents Observer/ Atle Staalesen

Arctic Map

By late May, a carrier had set out on the icy route without icebreaker escort. “… [S]ea ice along the Russian Arctic coast is quickly vanishing as temperatures … have been reaching record highs. With the retreating ice comes tanker traffic. … [T]he ‘Christophe de Margerie’ … on May [19th] kickstarted this year’s shipping season across the eastern part of […]

» Read more

RUSSIALINK: “Arctic Likely to See Ice-Free Summers Despite Climate Action, Study Says” – Moscow Times

Arctic Map

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – April 22, 2020) The Arctic will likely lose its summertime ice cover by 2050 even if current levels of CO2 emissions are significantly cut, a new study published in the American Geophysical Union’s journal has warned. Climate change has reduced sea ice coverage in the Arctic Ocean in recent decades, with 2019 tying with 2012 […]

» Read more

RUSSIALINK: “Russia’s Leading Climate Change Expert Gives Sober Prognosis; Russia is set to experience huge temperature increases and extreme weather events, but there will also be opportunities.” – Moscow Times

Arctic Map

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Daniel Kozin – April 3, 2020) Russia’s top climate scientist Dr. Vladimir Kattsov is confident that serious environmental changes lie in store this century. “Russia is among the countries where the average warming greatly exceeds the global average, and Russia is warming especially quickly the closer you get to the Arctic,” Kattsov, 58, told The […]

» Read more

RUSSIALINK: “Vilfand explains extremely warm winter in Russia” – Interfax

Map of Russia and Russian Flag adapted from images at state.gov

MOSCOW. Feb 21 (Interfax) – The unusually warm winter in Russia this year is down to the abnormally wide pressure gap between the Atlantic “weather centers” and an absence of a steady anticyclone over Siberia, the scientific director of the Russian Hydrometeorological Center, Roman Vilfand, told Interfax. “All circulation rules were broken this year. Practically throughout the winter, for nearly […]

» Read more

RUSSIALINK: “Russians See Pollution as a Greater Threat Than Terrorism – Poll” – Moscow Times

File Photo of Smokestacking Spewing Cloud of Discharge

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – January 23, 2020) [Photo caption in original: Nationwide protests rocked Russia in 2019 over unpopular plans to build landfills in remote parts of the country to take in waste from more populous areas.Sergei Bobylev / TASS] Russians believe that environmental pollution poses a greater threat to humanity than terrorism, according to the results of an […]

» Read more

JRL NEWSWATCH: “Can Russia be key in fighting climate change? Russia tree planting would represent a benign form of international partnership” – Washington Times/ Edward Lozansky

Siberian River, Forest, Mountain

“… There are 3 trillion trees in the world. … major absorbers of greenhouse gases. A hardwood can absorb up to 48 pounds of carbon dioxide per year, adding up to about a ton of carbon dioxide in its first four decades. Thomas Crowther and a team of researchers from ETH Zurich have calculated that the world has an additional […]

» Read more

Russian PM Approves National Action Plan On Climate Change

Map of Arctic Highlighting Permafrost, adapted from image at nasa.gov

(Article text ©2020 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – January 3, 2020 – article text also appeared at rferl.org/a/russian-pm-approves-national-action-plan-on-climate-change/30362756.html) Russian Prime Minister Russian Dmitry Medvedev has approved a national action plan for the first phase of adapting to climate change. Medvedev’s order, dated December 25, was published on the government’s website on January 4. [http://m.government.ru/news/38739/] It outlines […]

» Read more

RUSSIALINK: “Arctic temperatures 2.5 degrees higher than normal in 2018, fall and winter warmest since 1938” – Interfax

Arctic Map

MOSCOW. Dec 31 (Interfax) – Air temperatures were 2.5 degrees Celsius higher than normal in the Russian Arctic in 2018, especially in the Eastern Arctic, where temperatures exceeded the norm by 3.56 degrees (the fourth highest value since 1936), while winter and fall 2018 were the warmest since 1938, the Russian Natural Resources and Ecology Ministry said in a report […]

» Read more

New Moscow-St. Petersburg Highway Emblematic of Russia’s Road Problems and Much Else

Moscow Roads

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, Nov. 15, 2019) By the end of November, the new M-11 superhighway between Moscow and St. Petersburg is scheduled to be opened for traffic, a move that will significantly shorten the time for travel between the two capitals. But both its construction and its finished form reflect many problems that plague Russian […]

» Read more

RUSSIALINK: “11,000 Scientists Warn of ‘Untold Suffering’ From Climate Change. Only 4 of Them Are Russian.” – Moscow Times

Map of Arctic Highlighting Permafrost, adapted from image at nasa.gov

The Moscow Times spoke to one of the Russian scientists about his reasons for signing the open letter and his fears for the future. (Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Pjotr Sauer – November 8, 2019) Professor Alexei Kotov greets his colleagues as he navigates the poorly-lit corridors of the Institute of Ecology and Evolution in the south of Moscow, where […]

» Read more

JRL NEWSWATCH: “How Russia Stands To Change With The Climate” – Forbes/ James Rodgers

Map of Arctic Highlighting Permafrost, adapted from image at nasa.gov

“… In a climate where winter temperatures in Arctic regions can fall below -50 degrees C (-58 degrees F), warmer weather might offer some relief. A research paper … even predicted … ‘Global warming will likely to bring more positive rather than negative effects for Russia’s food security and agriculture ….’ The same paper warned … ‘A major negative impact […]

» Read more

JRL NEWSWATCH: “Radical warming in Siberia leaves millions on unstable ground” – Washington Post/ Anton Troianovski, Chris Mooney, Michael Robinson Chavez, Trish Wilson, Brian Murphy, Brian Malasics

Map of Arctic Highlighting Permafrost, adapted from image at nasa.gov

“… The permafrost that once sustained farming – and upon which villages and cities are built – is in the midst of a great thaw, blanketing the region with swamps, lakes and odd bubbles of earth …. In Yakutia … cattle and reindeer herding have plunged 20 percent …. Siberians … are being driven to migrate …. An international team […]

» Read more

RUSSIALINK: “Russian Cities at Risk as Climate Change Accelerates Permafrost Thaw – Report” – Moscow Times

Map of Arctic Highlighting Permafrost, adapted from image at nasa.gov

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – October 3, 2019) Russia’s permafrost is expected to thaw at an accelerating rate between now and 2100, a process that could trigger a “feedback loop” of carbon emissions, according to a new report published by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). More than 50% of Russia’s territory is located in the planet’s frozen cryosphere. […]

» Read more

JRL NEWSWATCH: “The unraveling of Vladimir Putin” – Joseph Dresen/ The Hill

File Photo of Vladimir Putin at Podium with United Russia Logo, Gesturing

“… as tens of thousands of protesters once again took to the streets in Moscow to protest upcoming municipal elections, Russian state television showed a smiling … Putin riding with … [a] motorcycle club in Crimea. … a typical scene … the president doing tough guy stuff at the location of his most popular act of [the] annexation of Crimea. […]

» Read more

JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russian Arctic leader warns of ‘dramatic’ climate change impact; Head of remote Yakutia region expresses concern about effects of rising temperatures” – Financial Times/ Henry Foy

Map of Arctic Highlighting Permafrost, adapted from image at nasa.gov

“The head of Russia’s largest Arctic territory has warned of ‘very dramatic’ impacts from climate change … Moscow comes under increasing pressure …. [with climate] emerg[ing] as an important domestic issue … due to … large-scale melting of permafrost in the north of the country and temperature increases … outpac[ing] global averages. … creat[ing] serious knock-on effects for Russia, including […]

» Read more

RUSSIALINK: “Russia Is Warming Disproportionately Fast, Environment Ministry Says” – Moscow Times

Polar Bear on Ice

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – September 4, 2019) Climate change is heating Russia at a faster rate than the rest of the world, the country’s environment ministry has said in a draft report of environmental data for 2018. Earlier reports have predicted that climate change will bring epidemics, drought and mass hunger to Russia if left unchecked. Melting permafrost in […]

» Read more

Dubbed The ‘Nuclear Titanic,’ Russia’s First Floating Atomic Power Plant Sets Sail Amid Environmental Fears

Montage of Radioactivity Symbol and Russian Map with Russian Flag, adapted from images at .gov sites

(Article text ©2019 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – Aug. 23, 2019 – article text also appeared at rferl.org/a/russia-floating-nuclear-plant-lomonosov-sets-sail-arctic/30125553.html) Russia’s first floating nuclear power plant, which Greenpeace has dubbed a “floating Chernobyl,” has set sail on a nearly 5,000-kilometer voyage to its destination in the nation’s northeast. The floating plant, the Akademik Lomonosov, departed the Arctic port […]

» Read more

RUSSIALINK: “Russia Says It Won’t Share Rocket Explosion Data as Suspicions Swirl” – Moscow Times

Montage of Radioactivity Symbol and Russian Map with Russian Flag, adapted from images at .gov sites

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – August 20, 2019) Russia told an international organization set up to verify a ban on nuclear tests that a military testing accident in northern Russia earlier this month was none of its business and that handing it radiation data was entirely voluntary. Russia has acknowledged that five nuclear workers were killed in the explosion on […]

» Read more

JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia’s rubbish mountain piles pressure on Putin; Waste recycling reforms spark protests from provincial residents” – Financial Times/ Max Seddon

Map of Russia and Russian Flag adapted from images at state.gov

“… in woodland near … Likino-Dulyovo … [demonstrators] stare down riot police and bulldozers. … want[ing] to stop … construction of a garbage processing plant in wet peatland forest that they say feeds local rivers and hosts endangered species. … fac[ing] violent crackdowns, with reports of police beating and arresting protesters … dragging an elderly man away by the arm […]

» Read more

Trump Calls Putin To Offer Help Battling Siberian Fires

Vladirmir Putin and Donald Trump Sitting in Chairs with Flags Behind, adapted from image at whitehouse.gov

(Article text ©2019 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – August 1, 2019 – article text also appeared at rferl.org/a/russian-army-called-in-to-fight-siberia-forest-fires/30085889.html) U.S. President Donald Trump has offered to help Russia battle widespread forest fires in Siberia as he seeks to repair Washington’s fractious relationship with Moscow. Trump called Russian President Vladimir Putin to make the offer, the Kremlin said […]

» Read more

AUDIO JRL NEWSWATCH: “‘The Rot Starts From The Top’: Russians Protest Over Problems Big And Small” – NPR/ Lucian Kim

Map of Russia and Russian Flag adapted from images at state.gov

“… [As] Putin approaches his 20th year in power, anger over bread-and-butter issues is sparking protests across the country. Even in sleepy Pereslavl-Zalessky, population 40,000, [perched on a lake, with onion-domed churches, historic and picturesque qualities giving it an untapped tourist potential,] locals no longer hide their frustration with the powers that be. … [A] recent rally in … unkempt […]

» Read more

RUSSIALINK: “Putin orders governors to listen to locals on waste dump issue” – Interfax

Map of Russia and Russian Flag adapted from images at state.gov

(Interfax – July 23, 2019) Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered the governments of Arkhangelsk Region and Moscow to take into account public opinion when settling the issue of siting rubbish dumps near the town of Shiyes. “The Arkhangelsk Region government and the Moscow government [are ordered] to take into account the opinion of the residents of Arkhangelsk Region when […]

» Read more

RUSSIALINK: “Russians’ Fear of Chernobyl Repeat Hits Record Low, Poll Says” – Moscow Times

Chernobyl File Photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – July 17, 2019) Fewer Russians believe that a Chernobyl-like nuclear disaster could happen now than at any point in the past two decades, according to an independent Levada Center poll published Wednesday. The April 1986 explosion at the Chernobyl power plant in Soviet Ukraine spread radioactive material across much of the Northern Hemisphere, affecting tens […]

» Read more

Yet Another Benefit from USSR’s Disintegration – Large Reduction in Release of Greenhouse Gases

Space in Low Earth Orbit with Partial Sun

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, June 25, 2019) The end of the Soviet Union brought many benefits, but one that has not attracted much attention up until now is that its demise has resulted in a significant decline in the release of greenhouse gases as a result of changes in post-Soviet food systems, a new study by […]

» Read more

JRL NEWSWATCH: “Siberia Could Be The Tourist Hotspot Of The Future, Literally” – Forbes/ Eric Mack

File Photo of People Working on Car in Siberian Woodlands

“The massive Asian side of Russia is often forgotten, as much of it consists often frigid and uninhabitable Siberian wilderness. … A team of Russian and American researchers looked at a number of computer models … [U]nder the most extreme scenario … [regarding] greenhouse gases … parts of Siberia where average January temperatures dip below minus 30 will be warmer […]

» Read more

RUSSIALINK: “Half of Russians Are Worried About the Environment Where They Live – Survey” – Moscow Times

Russian Landfill; adapted from image at epa.gov

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – June 5, 2019) Almost half of Russians are concerned about the environment in their regions, according to a study by the Moscow-based NAFI Research Center obtained by the state-run TASS news agency. Environmental issues have taken center stage at protest rallies across Russia over the past year, with citizens drawing attention to concerns including landfills, […]

» Read more

JRL NEWSWATCH VIDEO: “Drowning in waste, Russians fume over lack of recycling” – AFP

Aerial View of Kremlin and Environs

“… rubbish towers above the Timokhovo dump outside Moscow, one of the biggest in Europe. Authorities plan to build an incinerator to burn some of the trash, but … activists are fighting for it to be recycled instead. Since 2013, residents have complained of foul sulphurous smells and worry that effluents are polluting ground water. … [A]uthorities acknowledged the smell […]

» Read more

JRL NEWSWATCH: “There Are Still 10 Chernobyl-Style Reactors Operating Across Russia. How Do We Know They’re Safe?” – Live Science/ Stephanie Pappas

Montage of Radioactivity Symbol and Russian Map with Russian Flag, adapted from images at .gov sites

“… Reactor 4 at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant … [had an explosion and] spewed radioactive material across northern Europe. That reactor, a design called the RBMK-1000, was discovered to be fundamentally flawed after the Chernobyl accident. And yet there are still 10 of the same type of reactor in operation in Russia. How do we know if they’re safe? […]

» Read more
1 2 3 5