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Experts Found out How to Deal with Black Carbon Emissions in the Arctic

05.11.2014

The workshop brought together experts in the field of environmental protection and transport in order to solve the problem of atmosphere pollution of the Murmansk region by solid soot particles. These particles in the international science are called "black carbon". The seminar was also attended by representatives of the Batelle Memorial Institute (USA) and the US Embassy in Moscow.

– Our project started in 2013. It was mainly aimed was to determine the amount of black carbon in the Arctic. The choice of the region was linked to the fact that it is the most developed region located in the Arctic Circle. We have tried as much as possible to scrutinize all diesel sources and assess their impact on the environment. It is recognized that black carbon is the second most important factor which affects global warming, – said Vladimir Malyshev, the project thematic leader, Head of the Energy and Transport Department.

– We thank MSTU for fruitful work for the past two years. Without this cooperation, we would not have been able to achieve results interesting for Russia, – said Teresa Kuklinski, the representative of the US Environmental Protection Agency.

The expert noted that the black carbon strongly affects people's health. Preliminary investigations revealed that the fine particles cause serious problems with the cardiovascular system, causing respiratory diseases.

Alexei Kokorin, the Head of Russia's Climate Programme of the World Wildlife Fund, said that black carbon emissions may affect climate change in the Arctic, in particular, variations in the atmosphere reflectivity.

According to Meredidd Evans, representative of Battelle Memorial Institute, mining contributes most to black carbon emissions in the Murmansk region. High levels of consumption of diesel mining equipment, namely, rigid dump trucks, bulldozers, as well as the use of mining equipment, affect air pollution. The second important source of black carbon on the Kola Peninsula is motor vehicles.

– We are well aware that emissions from vehicles contribute significantly to air pollution. Therefore, we are constantly renovating our rolling stock, – commented Andrey Varguzin, General Director of "Murmanskavtotrans" .

Varguzin stressed that the work on buses replacement of those of Euro-0 environmental class, used on the regional roads, with Euro-5 environmental class will continue.

The workshop participants expressed confidence that the project will be continued.

More information about "Murmanskavtotrans" pilot project of bus fleet qualitative renewal can be found here