Russian Garbage Problem is Spreading

Many cities are joining the protests against garbage dumps in central Russia, as the problem becomes more and more grotesque.

Elderly residents of Moscow region and central Russia often comment on deteriorating ecology – some 30 years ago the heart of industrial Soviet Union was surrounded by beautiful forests, full of clean creeks and little cozy villages. Nowadays, the villages are abandoned, drinking water is being imported, and garbage hills are shadowing the forests along the roads. The vivid sign of broken ecological balance is seagulls breeding around Moscow, some 700 kilometers from the sea line. This breed of gulls is feeding of enormous garbage dumps in Moscow region, nesting on the nearby dirty rivers and lakes. Some garbage hills in the region south of Moscow are so big locals joke there is a ski resort being built there.

Moscow authorities are still being scarce on comments regarding growing garbage problem – traffic, accommodation, and other infrastructural problems are all accounted for, yet garbage issue remains severely overlooked. Rumors say the hastily arrange decision include mostly moving the garbage sites further from cities, into the forests of adjacent regions. The garbage problem Moscow region faces now cannot be tackled using traditional Russian force methods – you cannot really just ban garbage or force it out with military presence. The problem require competent solutions, a challenge local authorities may not be up to.

Protests in the cities around Moscow, like Volokolamsk and Yegorievsk, are causing the authorities to panic, forcing faster and easier decision of moving the garbage to be applied. Yaroslavskaya oblast, a region to the north of Moscow, have accepted the deal to accommodate 200 tons of garbage from the capital, and place in just a few kilometers away from the river Volga, one of the main water veins of european Russia. Local residents, however, are not keen of this deal, and made a statement by travelling with their household waste to Moscow to dump it somewhere in the capital city.

This rebellious art challenge, that was trending on twitter in Yaroslavl, however, will not stop Moscow garbage problem. Unless some serious legislative action is done to encourage recycling, Moscow region and all of central Russia are going to see a lot more “ski resorts” with live seagulls.