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There's something in the air in Russia

Russia’s cities are choking. If we’re going to change the state of air pollution in this country, we need to open up data, monitoring and public engagement. Русский

Why climate change is not on Russia’s agenda

In Russia, global climate change has already had serious economic, environmental and social impact. A heady mix of conspiracy and inertia is to blame.

Russia is swimming in oil

Russia’s oil industry lacks the infrastructure to avoid spills and leaks; and the environmental consequences are horrific.


Corruption, credits and bad luck in Siberia: the crisis of Russian agriculture

RIAN_01440994.LR_.ru_.jpgIn Siberia, agriculture faces crisis after crisis as small farmers find themselves in debt caused by bad weather, bureaucracy and corruption.

Куда исчезла вся дикая природа Сибири?

Widderkopf_B CC Hajotthu Crop.jpgБраконьерство серьезно понизило количество диких животных в Сибири и, кажется, руководству национальных и краевых парков до этого нет никакого дела. in English

Where has all the wildlife gone in Siberia?

Widderkopf_B CC Hajotthu Crop.jpg

Poaching is drastically reducing numbers of many wildlife species in Siberia, and government at national and regional level doesn’t seem to care. на русском языке

Energy efficiency in Russia

Russia intended to improve its energy efficiency by 40% of GDP by 2020. How is it doing?


Climate policy according to Gazprom

4893122425_724729caa0_z.jpgAs Russian dreams of becoming a ‘great ecological power’ fade, Gazprom, it seems, has been driving climate policy all along.


My vast Siberian motherland is dying

Southern Siberia is dying: farms are failing, the forests have been felled, and the people are leaving – a vast area has been failed by its government.


Discounting the future of climate change in Russia

STS039-085-00E_Lake_Balkhash,_Kazakhstan_April_1991 wiki - NASA_0.jpgLike it or not, global warming will affect Russia, and ignoring it only stores up problems for later.



The problems of environmental activism in Russia

arctic-ocean-79833_640_0.jpg Climate change is still of little interest to Russians. But why? на русском языке


Welcome to the not-so-new world order

The latest IMF report has confirmed what some have long argued – ‘rising powers’ like Russia and China are changing the world, but not in the way you might think.


The ecology of sanctions

Remulazz Paper mill in Baikalsk (crop)_0.jpgSanctions against Russian natural resources tycoons will be good for the environment. на русском языке.


Hare today and gone tomorrow

A recent St Petersburg conference dedicated to hares has become the unlikely subject of a feud between the Russian Ministry of Culture and academic institutions. It is a hare raising story...


On the run in Russia

Konstantin Rubakhin, an ecology activist, is on the run in Russia, trying to escape both the police and the security services. на русском языке


Russia’s gamekeeper has turned poacher

Russia has a vast number of nature reserves and national parks. But the government body supposed to be protecting them is in fact destroying many of them by allowing development and mining. на русском языке 

A burning issue in Siberia

Farm workers in the Omsk region, cheated out of their land by big business, have taken their cases to the courts; and taken the matter into their own hands… на русском языке

After the flood

In Russian, Krymsk and Krym (Crimea) sound quite similar. They also share double standards – as some residents of the Kuban region have discovered. на русском языке


The rehousing scam in Omsk

Six years ago the Omsk regional authorities embarked on a programme aimed at rehousing people living in unsafe and dilapidated accommodation. But the results are far from satisfactory. на русском языке

The last camping ground

Russia’s oil goliaths have been devastating vast areas of natural landscape, and indigenous people’s lives, in their rush to extract the black gold that lies beneath. But a family of reindeer herders has taken them on. на русском языке

The mistake that is Sochi

The Russian Government has a lot riding on the Sochi Olympics – prestige, glory, credibility, and an enormous amount of money. But why choose Sochi in the first place?

The Siberian archipelago

There’s a popular misconception about Russian politics that ‘everything happens in Moscow.’ But sometimes it’s the capital that has to catch up with the regions (or with Siberia at least).

Chemfest in Russia’s ‘chemical capital’

Russia’s industrial cities are more than a blot on the landscape. They are the source of appalling chemical pollution, a problem that neither the authorities nor the oligarch owners seem to have any interest in addressing. But people still have to live there.

Has Siberia had enough of Russia?

With Siberia’s enormous natural resources being mercilessly exploited by Russia, and now China as well, Aleksei Tarasov wonders if the region might some day amount to more than someone else’s colony.

A father’s last dream

PimkinIn July 2012, a mix of flash flooding and gross negligence conspired to kill nearly 200 in Southern Russia. One man has been fighting since then to get justice for his dead son. Lyolya Vlasenko reports. 

Where there’s muck, there’s brass

Protests against the proposed mining of nickel and copper in the heart of Russia’s Black Earth belt have been escalating, and so has the media smear campaign against the protesters. Konstantin Rubakhin, an activist himself, sees this as a positive sign. 

'Hands off our Russian Arctic!'

Russia’s seizure in international waters of the Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise, the arrests, refusal of bail and charges of piracy for activists and crew alike has provoked worldwide outrage. But what are the reasons for Moscow’s heavy-handedness; and why has the official western response been so muted? 

Sold down the river

The Angara, the only river draining Lake Baikal, might disappear by 2020, as it is progressively dammed for massive hydroelectric schemes designed to aid the development of … China.

Licence to kill on Lake Baikal

The unique Baikal seal has a beautiful coat, which is its undoing. Poachers make good money by killing the babies and selling the furs in China. Despite a government ban, the seal’s numbers are declining dramatically. Gayane Petrosyan asks,“what is to be done?”

A storm in a paint pot

The Russian Orthodox Church has, since the late 1990s, become an increasingly powerful force in Ukrainian politics and society. But the violent desecration of a piece of modern art shows it is also increasingly intolerant of different viewpoints.

‘Delai Sam’ - Russian community DIY

‘Delai Sam’ is Russian for ‘Do it yourself,’ a concept supposedly alien to the average Russian, who is used to having other people take decisions for him or her. But, as Tatyana Kargina reports, herself a ‘Delia Sam’ believer, more and more people are becoming civic grassroots activists.

Taken from Chita, Made in China

Lake Baikal, the largest freshwater lake on the planet, is part of Russia’s DNA, and many romantic ballads sing of its size and beauty. Beyond the lake is a different story. Do Trans-Baikal Territory and its capital Chita have a future or is this a godforsaken backwater? Mikhail Loginov investigates

Aleksei Navalny takes on ‘the fools and the roads’

As the saying goes: ‘Russia has two misfortunes: the fools and the roads.’ Aleksei Navalny is just about still standing for election as Mayor of Moscow, but, in the proverbial way, he is also raising his profile in the provinces by offering people practical help with everyday problems.


Nickel and dimes

The fertile territories around Voronezh have long been referred to as Russia’s ‘breadbasket’. They also hold the last major nickel reserves in Europe, and the mining companies are about to move in...

The tragedy of Russia's abandoned wooden churches

Russia’s wooden architecture, especially its churches, was hardly a priority during Soviet times and now many of the unique old buildings are very close to total ruin.  A new book documents the tragedy in some of the most inaccessible parts of Russia’s north.  The numbers are daunting, but a tiny ray of hope has appeared on the horizon, which could rescue one or two of the near-ruins, says Alexander Mozhayev 

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