The former Soviet empire spanned eleven time zones and contained half the world's forests; vast deposits of oil, gas and coal; various ores; major rivers such as the Volga, Don and Angara; and extensive biodiversity. These resources and animals, as well as the people who lived in the former Soviet Union - Slavs, Armenians, Georgians, Azeris, Kazakhs and Tajiks, indigenous Nenets and Chukchi - were threatened by environmental degradation and extensive pollution. This environmental history of the former Soviet Union explores the impact that state economic development programs had on the environment. The authors consider the impact of Bolshevik ideology on the establishment of an extensive system of nature preserves, the effect of Stalinist practices of industrialization and collectivization on nature, and the rise of public involvement under Khrushchev and Brezhnev, and changes to policies and practices with the rise of Gorbachev and the break-up of the USSR.
Paul Josephson is Professor of History at Colby College. A specialist in big science and technology in the twentieth century, he is the author of nine books on the history of science and technology and on human-nature interactions. Aleh Cherp is Professor of Environmental Sciences and Policy at the Central European University in Budapest, Hungary, and Associate Professor at Lund University, Sweden. Ruben Mnatsakanian is a Professor of Environmental Sciences and Policy at the Central European University and head of the Collaborating Centre of the Global Environmental Outlook Project launched by United Nations Environmental Programme. Nicolai Dronin is a Senior Researcher in the Department of Geography at Moscow State University. Dmitry Efremenko is Head of the Sociology Department at the Institute for Scientific Information on Social Sciences at the Russian Academy of Sciences. Vladislav Larin is a senior analyst, writer and researcher for the Russian Academy of Sciences' journal Energy: Economics, Technology, Ecology.
1. From imperial to socialist nature preservation: environmental protection and resource development in the Russian empire, 1861-1925; 2. Stalinism, industry, agriculture and the environment; 3. The Khrushchev reforms, environmental politics, and the awakening of environmentalism, 1953-64; 4. Developed socialism, environmental degradation and the time of economic 'stagnation', 1964-85; 5. Gorbachev's reforms, the break-up of the USSR and the environmental policies of transition; Conclusion: 6. After the break-up of the USSR: inheriting the environmental legacy.
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- ID: 9780521689724
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