15 May 2018, 19:39


Enterprises in Kiev-held areas are hazardous for Lugansk region residents - official

LUGANSK, May 15 (Lugansk Media Centre) - Enterprises in Kiev-held parts of the Lugansk region pose a threat to residents’ life and health because of the worn-out equipment they are using, Lugansk People’s Republic Council of Ministers acting deputy chairman Alexander Drobot said at a round table discussion at the Lugansk Media Centre which addressed environmental risks created by companies in Ukraine-controlled territory.

“These companies (located in Kiev-controlled territory) are functioning. Their development areas are nearly adjacent to neighbourhoods in such towns as Severodonetsk and Lisichansk. Their equipment has a critical degree of wear; we do not rule out contingencies during their operation that can escalate to a disaster,” Drobot said.

"Historically, the Lugansk region has been under man-induced impact. The contamination level has been quite high; the territory in question is the Ukraine-controlled part of the Lugansk region; it has always been on record and under special scrutiny,” the official said adding that it was viewed a high risk zone due to air/water pollution and the dumping of industrial waste.

“The situation has sharply deteriorated as Ukraine launched aggression against Donbass residents; you know about the accidents caused by blasts at the Azot and Linik associations. They were contained thanks to competent actions by Emergencies Ministry teams; however, the damage they caused to the ecological system was tremendous,” Drobot said.

“For example, on April 27, 2018, an electric cable rupture (at the Azot association located in Kiev-controlled Severodonetsk) stopped the cooling processes at the ammonia storage facility which might have resulted in an explosion and air contamination to the level exceeding the maximum permissible concentration by ten times,” he said.

The pollution zone might have expanded to 20 kilometres in four hours and to 35 kilometres in eight hours. The possible number of people caught in the contamination zone might have amounted to 287,000.

Emergencies at the Zarya company in Rubezhniy are fraught with explosions, pollution and harm to local residents’ health. The initial 10-kilometre contamination zone might expand to 20 kilometres in windy weather affecting a total of 59,000 people.

“These are glaring facts; we cannot be silent and are reiterating that the Kiev-held areas should take urgent measures. We are worried about the situation there,” Drobot said.

He noted that the LPR Council of Ministers had set up the inspectorate for the prevention of adverse impact on the environment under the aegis of the Donbass people reunification programme. The inspectorate comprises personnel of Emergencies and  Natural Resources Ministry and public organisations’ activists.

Meanwhile, Ukraine refuses to accept the LPR and the DPR’s assistance or discuss possible implications with Russian and international experts.

Earlier on Tuesday, Director of the Peace Initiatives and Conflict Studies Institute Denis Denisov said that Ukrainian authorities were  not taking measures to prevent a possible ecological disaster in Donbass. They can’t wait to see the tragedy unfold, in order to wheedle funds out of the West under the pretext of eliminating the consequences and then embezzle them, Denisov said. He also said that Ukraine was trying to accuse the Republics of environmental negligence in order to distract the international community and the public from problems at home.

The LPR and DPR envoys to the Minsk talks Vladislav Deinego and Denis Pushilin stated that the Republics insisted on the inspection of environmentally hazardous coalmines located in Kiev-controlled Donbass.

Head of the LPR Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Safety Department for Recycling Evgeniy Sergyuk noted that the Ukrainian policy in handling waste was conductive to an ecological catastrophe in the region.

Earlier, acting LPR Emergencies Minister Sergey Ivanushkin said the authorities in Kiev-held territories of Lugansk Region deliberately concealed the catastrophic ecological situation from their citizens.

LPR representative in the Contact Group humanitarian subgroup, head of the LPR working group on prisoner exchange Olga Koptseva said the LPR and DPR were insisting on immediate ecological inspections in Kiev-held parts of the Lugansk and Donetsk regions.

LuganskMediaCentre — 15 May — Lugansk