russia has already caused enormous damage to the Ukrainian environment, and continues to commit ecocide – to destroy nature in order to make our territories uninhabitable for years. The consequences of this not only for the environment, but also for us will be felt for more than one decade.
The village of Kalynivka in the Kyiv region. Even today, there is an unpleasant pungent smell from the burning of oil products, although a year has passed since the rockets from the russian invaders hit the local oil depot. The environment of the region continues to suffer from these consequences. This was confirmed by the participants of the press tour, which was organized by the National Interests Advocacy Network “ANTS”.
“The tour participants saw the consequences of missiles hitting an oil depot on March 24, 2022, near the village of Kalynyvka, Fastiv district, Kyiv region. It is worth noting that at that time, as a result of the instrumental and laboratory tests carried out by the inspectorate, it was established that the maximum allowable concentrations of oil products in the soil were exceeded by 16 times. The area of contaminated land amounted to 25.5 thousand m2”, says Olena Sas, coordinator of the project “Together for ecological democracy, justice and the rule of law in Ukraine”, funded by The U.S. State Department, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor (DRL).
According to Andriy Vagin, the deputy head of the DEI of the Capital District, 22 tanks with oil products, 8 railway overpasses with tank cars, and pipelines were destroyed due to rocket fire. The fire at the oil depot lasted for 5 days, according to the firemen, it was extremely difficult to put out the fire.
“As a result of the burning of 5.8 thousand tons of fuel, more than 20 thousand tons of pollutants entered the air of Kyiv region. Among them, carbon monoxide entered the air the most, the toxic effect of which is manifested when its content in the air is 3–4% and consists in irritation of the respiratory tract, dizziness,
headache, and tinnitus. Also, 36 tons of carbon monoxide entered the air, which is extremely dangerous for human health, causing rapid poisoning.”
Specialists of the State Inspection took soil and water samples for repeated analyzes yesterday to assess changes in the state of the environment. However, problems are visible even to the naked eye: oil products are constantly wedged to the surface and fill a considerable pit.
“In July of last year, locals reported a mass plague of fish in local reservoirs, and when experts arrived at the site, they were horrified: the shore was littered with fish corpses,” says Olena Sas. – And not far from the oil depot are the remains of a food warehouse, which was also hit by a rocket and completely burned down. This disaster, in particular, led to a significant spill of vegetable oils, which also had a negative impact on the environment.”
The participants saw with their own eyes the scale of the ecological disaster, and this is only in one region. The press tour ended with an inspection of the demolition waste dump near Irpen. Disposal of these remains is a very difficult task and currently has no solution.
In total, 2,362 cases of the impact of war on the environment have already been recorded. These are the direct consequences of hitting oil depots, occupation of nature reserves, soil contamination with shells and replacement of water, as well as burned equipment, mined steppes, landfills from the destruction of buildings, etc.
The list of crimes is considerable, and their consequences, which will be felt by more than one generation of Ukrainians, are even more terrifying.
DEI records all possible damage to the environment and transfers the data to the Ministry of Environment, which in turn is ready to present them in international courts in order to receive compensation from the russian aggressor.
Experts note that international crimes committed by russians will most likely be considered by the International Special Tribunal. And although there are actually no similar precedents in world practice, in order to bring the aggressor to justice and collect compensation for damages, it is necessary to correctly record and calculate the damage caused to nature and people. And now everyone can join this important cause.
Olena Sas noted that community representatives, business owners, farmers, foresters, and ordinary citizens can also learn to assess environmental damage in their communities, enterprises, and lands themselves. For this, a free course has been created on the Prometheus platform, for which you can register right now:
In this way, communities and entrepreneurs will be able to correctly declare their share of compensation when reparations are received by the state of Ukraine.
The organizer of the tour is the National Interests Advocacy Network (ANTS) within the framework of the project “Together for Environmental Democracy, Justice and the Rule of Law in Ukraine”, funded by The U.S. State Department, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor (DRL).
For additional information, contact Oleg Listopad firstname.lastname@example.org 067-320-4771