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By Paul Josephson, Nicolai Dronin, Ruben Mnatsakanian, Aleh Cherp, Dmitry Efremenko, Vladislav Larin

The previous Soviet empire spanned 11 time zones and contained part the world's forests; giant deposits of oil, fuel, and coal; a variety of ores; significant rivers resembling the Volga, Don, and Angara; and huge biodiversity. those assets and animals, in addition to the folks who lived within the former Soviet Union - Slavs, Armenians, Georgians, Azeris, Kazakhs and Tajiks, indigenous Nenets and Chukchi - have been threatened through environmental degradation and wide toxins. This environmental background of the previous Soviet Union explores the impression that country financial improvement courses had at the atmosphere. The authors think of the effect of Bolshevik ideology at the institution of an in depth method of nature preserves, the influence of Stalinist practices of industrialization and collectivization on nature, and the increase of public involvement less than Khrushchev and Brezhnev, and adjustments to rules and practices with the increase of Gorbachev and the break-up of the USSR.

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26 Dr. Astrov expressed the prevailing view that had emerged over the middle decades of the nineteenth century, that the “climate is ruined” as a consequence of human destruction of forests. However, (continued) 26 Anton Chekhov, Polnoe Sobranie Sochinenii i Pisem (Moscow, 1972–1984), vol. 13, pp. 72–73. 40 An Environmental History of Russia Box 1 (continued) other individuals soon advanced the argument that the steppe climate was no different from the past, and that human activity had not, or indeed could not, affect the climate.

Of course, the settlers 27 David Moon, “The Debate over Climate Change in the Steppe Region in NineteenthCentury Russia,” Russian Review, vol. 69 (April 2010), pp. , Peopling the Russian Periphery: Borderland Colonization in Eurasian History (London: Routledge, 2007), pp. 81–105. See also Moon’s The Russian Peasantry, 1600–1930: The World the Peasants Made, (Boston: Addison Wesley Longman, 1999). From Imperial to Socialist Nature Preservation 41 encountered hardships of unfamiliar environments and interference by native, largely nomadic peoples who resisted efforts to colonize them and their land.

35–51. Cathy Frierson, All of Russia is Burning! (Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2002). 44 An Environmental History of Russia Alexander II emancipated the serfs in 1861, but through a series of stipulations concerning the distribution, tenure, and ownership of the land and membership in existing peasant communes, the peasant remained tied to the land and his village and to small, narrow parcels of land. He had to repay the government loans provided to him to acquire the land that he thought he should be given outright.

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