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A Toxics-Free Future


PCBs Pollution and Monitoring

PCBs pollution of Nizhegorodskaya Oblast: territory monitoring and inventories of PCBs sources as an option to address the problem.

This is the first citizen-led inventory of PCB sources ever conducted in the Russian Federation. Eco-SPES collected water and soil samples in seven cities of Nizhegorodskaya Oblast where PCBs sources are located. These sources include facilities that operate PCBs-containing electric equipment, industrial waste incinerators and municipal landfills. These research studies confirmed PCBs contamination of territories near Dzerzhinsk, a site of PCB manufacturing. The inventory work allowed collection of information on the presence of PCBs-containing liquids and on reduction of equipment stocks at the majority of facilities of Nizhegorodskaya Oblast in 1999-2005. According to the surveys, facilities of the region reported that they now have 92% less PCBs-containing equipment compared to the results of AMAP survey in 1999. These equipment items either disappeared in facilities' reports (but are still actually used), or were decommissioned and PCBs-containing wastes were illegally "recycled" or eliminated. High officials of governmental environmental bodies of the region were seriously concerned about these results. Similar developments may be observed in other regions of the country, and the study underscored the importance of NGO involvement in inventories.

Monitoring and measurement of PCBs in seven cities
Inventory of PCBs in Nizhegorodskaya Oblast