29. Juni 2005


"Clean Dvina - Clean Baltic" Summer Camp

From 28 of July to 4 of August the international environmental camp "Clean Dvina - Clean Baltic" will take place in the area of Novopolotsk city. The participants of the camp will focus on the problem of the obsolete pesticides disposal dump and its influence on the ecosystem of the Western Dvina and the Baltic Sea. One of the largest pesticides disposal dumps in Belarus is situated in the area of Verhnedvinsk city, within some kilometers from the Western Dvina inflow. According to the official information there were buried 455 tones of about 47 types of pesticides, including chlorine-organic. It is quite possible that the amount of pesticides as well as a number of types is higher. The present conditions of the disposal dump causes alarm among the environmental activists.

Activists of different environmental NGO's from Belarus and other countries are coming to the international environmental camp "Clean Dvina - Clean Baltic" to express their solidarity in the cause of water protection and solution of the dangerous pesticides disposal dump. Among the organizers of the international environmental camp "Clean Dvina - Clean Baltic" international environmental camp "Clean Dvina - Clean Baltic" are:Environmental group Foundation for Realization of Ideas, Minsk, Belarus;International Environmental Group Ecodefence! Kaliningrad, Russia;Latvian Green Movement, Latvia.Supported by Coalition Clean Baltic (CCB).

Why is it important?
Western Dvina is one of the most polluted rivers in Belarus.. Baltic is a region of the utterly varied flora and fauna, a region which is threatened by the pollution of chemical substances - pesticides. . Pesticides are the extremely toxic pollutants which pose a real threat to the environment and human health. . The Verhnedvinsk pesticides disposal dump is one of the largest disposal dumps of the dangerous chemical waste products in Belarus.. There is a real threat of releases of high toxic chemicals to the environment in the water area of the Western Dvina and the Baltic Sea. . Health consequences from pesticides impact are very considerable. Such pesticides are capable to cause embryotoxic and mutagenic effects. The health injury usually doesn't appear in the exposed adult population, but rather, in the offspring. . Officially, this pesticides tomb has no owner. None official structure accounts this dump, the verifications are irregular.. The population of the neighbouring villages and settlements is not informed on the health consequences from pesticides impact and does not emphasize the real threats. The local authorities don't inform citizen about the imminent danger.. There is an idea to burn these obsolete pesticides from the tomb in special incinerator as a solution of this problem. Incineration of these chemical substances can be a source of other dangerous substances. Organizers of the camp advocate:. Conducting of a complex independent environmental monitoring on the territory of Verhnedvinsk hot spot.. Preventing usage of incinerators or cement kilns as a solution to the obsolete pesticides problem.. Dissemination of the information about the present condition of the disposal dump and the fatal consequences of the pesticides usage. Actions planned during the international environmental camp "Clean Dvina - Clean Baltic 2005": The summer camp activities can be divided into two constituents: educational and informational:Educational part includes trainings, workshops, and lectures for the participants on the problem of chemical pollution and toxic chemicals management, water resources protection and chemical safety, effective public work of NGO. Informational part includes actions and events directed on attraction of the attention of the local population, local authorities and Mass Media to the problem of the disposal dump; elaboration of the possible problem solving; discussion on the possible cooperation among different NGO's on the issue of water protection. How to take part: . Make sure that you are definitely incited to take an active part in the activities of the international environmental camp "Clean Dvina - Clean Baltic", get into gear, and participate in actions, trainings, lections.. Make sure that you are able to spend a week in very modest conditions. . Fill the registration form, send it to the headquarters of the Camp and wait for the prompt reply. BE ATTENTIVE! Those who wish to take part should send the fulfilled form to the Headquarters of the Camp before the 17 of July 2005!The Headquarters of the Camp provide accommodation, food for all participants for the whole period of the camp; travel reimbursement is available only for participants from Belarus, Lithuania, Latvia and Russia.

Headquarters of the Camp
Please send the registration forms, questions and suggestions to the underwritten address:info@friby.org

For further information please contact the Headquarters:

In Belarus: +375 29 685 81 44, +375 29 658 74 45, e-mail: info@friby.org

In Russia (Kaliningrad): + 7 911 45 20 412, e-mail: gruzdi@gmail.com

In Latvia+3719173047e-mail: alda.ozola@zalie.lv

10. Juni 2005

Kaliningrad NGO honoured with award

Russian NGO ECODEFENSE! in Kaliningrad was awarded with the “ENVIRONMENT FOR PEOPLE” Prize for the protection of the Baltic environment and environmental education of students, teachers and politicians.
On the 8th of June letter from International Department of the City of Kalmar (Sweden) has reached the office of environmental NGO Ecodefense! In Kaliningrad. “We are very glad to inform you that the City of Kalmar has decided to give you the environmental prize “Environment for people”, - writes its author, Anders Engstrom, International Department official. As it is stated in motivation part of the prize’s evaluation committee, Ecodefense! was awarded with this honorary prize for its directed actions carried out with the aim to reduce pollution in the Baltic Sea. Also committee members specially note Ecodefense! environmental training activities for teachers, pupils, politicians and the public.
“The comprehensive training and campaign work has become a model method in encouraging people to become active in environmental matters for sustainable development on local, regional and international levels”, - says evaluation committee in the awarding decision. Significant factor for the final decision of the committee was active cooperation of Ecodefense! with different structures, state and private, municipal and public in most countries around Baltic Sea.
Such campaigns as “Clean river – clean Baltic”, that has resulted in starting of wastewaters treatment facilities construction on pulp-and-paper enterprises of Kaliningrad region of Russia and “Stop D6!” that has united environmentalists from Kaliningrad, Lithuania and Poland in the effort to prevent oil pollution of the Baltic Sea through oil drilling; support of the Svetly town citizens in their struggle to prevent construction of the oil terminal nearby by means of first environmental referendum in Kaliningrad region;
environmental information agency that includes press-service and publication environmental magazine; legal rights’ protection campaign; environmental education projects and other Ecodefense! activities were truly appreciated by Council of City of Kalmar.

The prize will be graced to Ecodefense! representatives during celebration of Hanseatic Days in Tartu, Estonia on July 2nd. “Environment for people” awards are made by DIE HANSE network to individuals or organizations that have contributed in some way to improving the environment of the Baltic Sea and the shipping waters of the Hansa League. DIE HANSE is an active network of towns and cities that historically belonged to the association of merchant towns known as the Hanseatic League, or had lively trading exchanges with it. The new HANSE (www.hanse.org) was founded in 1980 in the Dutch town of Zwolle and since then it has become the world's largest voluntary association of towns and cities.

For additional information, and direct contact: Ecodefense! phone +7 911 4520412, +7 0112 580286; ecodefense@ecodefense.ru

6. Juni 2005

The Corrupted Nuclear Industry Is Mortally Dangerous for Russia

Declaration of non-governmental organizations concerning the arrest of the former Atomic Energy Minister Adamov

On May 2, 2005 in Switzerland the former Russian Minister of Atomic Energy Evgeny Adamov was detained on suspicion of diverting money intended to improve Russian nuclear security. The former minister is accused of embezzlement of several million dollars of American taxpayers' money.

Actually, corruption, embezzlement and misappropriation in the nuclear industry are much more serious.

From 1998-2000 Minatom (the Russian Atomic Energy Ministry) received as international assistance more than $270 million for a waste management program – funds that, according to the Russian Court of Auditors, “were not registered and reported”. As officials from the General Prosecutor’s Office reported in 1998, the top management of the largest nuclear industry plant, Mayak, used forged documents to smuggle radioactive materials. Thefts of high tech equipment became an ordinary practice at national nuclear power plants: in 2002 alone at the Leningrad NPP the theft of hundreds of water flow meters and machinations with servo-motors were exposed. This is just one aspect of the problem.

Most accidents at nuclear plants are caused by human error. When the attention of nuclear industry workers, irrespective of their position and status, is focused on commercial machinations, while neglecting safety of the country, which causes threat of new accidents similar to the one in Chernobyl.
Therefore we, Russian non-governmental organizations, call on President Putin and Prime Minister Fradkov to urgently reconsider the energy strategy of the country, to reject plans to construct new nuclear reactors and other dangerous projects, proposed by the head of Rosatom (construction of floating NPPs, plants for reprocessing irradiated nuclear fuel, construction of international radioactive waste repositories).
Today in Russia, it is possible to produce 30% of the total energy requirements of the country using technically and economically available renewable energy sources (while the share of nuclear energy in the total energy balance is less than 4%!). The potential of energy saving in the total energy balance is at least 40%. Expenditures to develop these environmentally friendly energy sources will be considerably less than expenditures for nuclear industry development. At the same time, available uranium stocks for the thermal nuclear energy industry are exhaustible, as oil and gas are.

We call on the top authorities of the country to show their political will in order to create conditions for investing scientific, labour and financial resources in energy saving and development of renewable energy sources.

V.A. Chouprov, Greenpeace Russia Energy Department Coordinator
A.V. Yablokov, President of the Centre for Ecological Policy of Russia
M.A. Piskunov, Board Chair of the Center for Assistance to Citizen Initiatives, Dmitrovgrad.
A.M. Vinogradov, Chair of the Balakovo Division of the All-Russian Environmental Protection Society
N.I. Mironova, Chair of the NGO “Movement for Nuclear Safety”, Chelyabinsk
S.I. Zabelin, Co-Chair of the Council of the International Social-Ecological Union
A.V. Toropov, Siberian Environmental Agency, Tomsk
L.V. Popova, Director of the Centre for Nuclear Ecology and Energy Policy, Co-chair of the Council of the International Social-Ecological Union
A.A. Talevlin, Vice-President of the Chelyabinsk NGO “Pravosoznaniye”
E. Murzakhanov, Board Chair of Tomsk Environmental Student Inspection (TESI), Tomsk
V.Slivyak, Ecodefense
M.P. Rikhvanova, Co-Chair of Baikal Environmental Wave, Irkutsk
V.S. Vedenkov, Chair of the Krasnoyarsk Division of the Movement “For Human Rights”
B.V. Nekrasov, Siberian Environmental Alliance, Tomsk
V.T. Semyashkina, Save Pechora Committee, The Republic of Komi
N.V. Kalinina, Board Chair of the Amur Ecological Club “Ulukitkan”, Blagoveschensk
G.B. Anosova, Director of the Baikal Centre for Public Environmental Assessment
A.V. Lebedev, the Bureau for Regional Outreach Campaigns (BROC), Vladivostok
P.E. Osipov, Director of the Amur Regional NGO “AmurSEU”
I. Shaidullin, Board Chair of the NGO “Chisty Gorod”, the Republic of Tatarstan
A.S. Gorelik, Public Committee of Human Rights Protection, Krasnoyarsk
O.L. Podborskaya, Coordinator of the Coalition “Zhivoe Pravo”, Krasnoyarsk
A.A. Babiy, the International Society “Memorial”, Krasnoyarsk
S.G. Shapkhaev, Buryat Regional Baikal Association
S.V. Pogozhev, “Respectable Citizens’ Society”, Krasnoyarsk
A.A. Polkovnikov, “The Union of the Unemployed in the Krasnoyarsk Krai”, Krasnoyarsk
O.V. Khristolyubova, Regional Rights Protection Committee, Krasnoyarsk
D.A. Puntus, All-Russian Society “Znaniye”, Krasnoyarsk
O.V. Bodrov, Board Chair of Zeleny Mir, Sosnovy Bor – Saint Petersburg
N.A. Zubov, Executive Director of the NGO “Krasnoyarsk Regional Ecological Union”, Krasnoyarsk
O.G. Likhtina, Chair of the Non-Governmental Rights Protection Organization, Krasnoyarsk
E.V. Spirin, Chair of the Sosnovoborsk Representative Office of the NGO “Krasnoyarsk Regional Environmental Union”, Sosnovoborsk
L.Ya. Zubova, Chair of the NGO “Academy of Russian Medicine”, Krasnoyarsk
D.N. Levashov, Deputy Chair of the Regional Environmental NGO SPES (Social Legal Ecological Community), Nizhny Novgorod Region, Dzerzhinsk
V.I. Dmitrieva, ISAR, Far East
A. Kozlovich, Ariston, Karelia
M.A. Shingarkin, Public Foundation “Grazhdanin”
E. Kruglikova, Apatity Ecological Centre “Gea”, Murmansk Region
A.P. Laletin, “Siberia Forest’s Friends”
O.A. Chernyagina, President of the Kamchatka League of Independent Experts
N.L. Kutepova, the Ozersk Social Ecological NGO “Planeta Nadezhd” (Planet of Hopes), Chelyabinsk Region
T.I. Savchenko, Magadansky Environmental Centre
O.Ya. Moskvina, “SoDeistvie tw”, Magadan
G. Smirnov, Chukotka Ecological Association “Kaira-Club”
A.E. Kaplin, President of Volga interregional public foundation of collaboration
R.G. Miniahmetov, Director of Institute of social ecology and sustainable development
I.B. Shafrutdinova, Chairman of Council of Ulianovsk regional branch of Allrussian movement “Green Planet”
V.V. Zaharov, Chairman of “Russian Green Movement”
Y.A. Fedorin, Chairman of Council of “Green Wave” movement, Chelyabinsk
F.G. Kobzhasarova, “Fatiha” movement, Chelyabinsk
A.V. Zimenko, Biodiversity conservation center
A. Arbachakov, AIST, Mezhdurechensk