Catastrophes Cost Russia over 100 Billion Rubles a Year

Catastrophes Cost Russia over 100 Billion Rubles a Year

25 March 2005

Published by

RIA Novosti, March 25, 2005

Moscow — Immediate damage from all kinds of emergencies in Russia exceeds 100 billion rubles (1 dollar equals 27.70 rubles) annually, Russian Emergency Situations Minister Sergei Shoigu has said.

“With account for indirect damage the figure may reach three percent of the gross domestic product”, he said at the presentation on Friday of Russia’s first Atlas of Natural and Man-Caused Dangers and Risks from Emergency Situations in the Russian Federation.

At the same time, Shoigu stressed that in recent years the number of emergency situations in Russia has been reducing in a sustainable manner.

“In recent years the number of emergency situations in Russia has been going down, though the scope of their effects and damage has been increasing”, said the emergency relief minister.

To him, scientific and technical progress and the ensuing involvement of more and more natural resources in economic turnover, the use of increasingly more complicated technological systems and the growing energy consumption simultaneously increase the possibility of natural and man-caused catastrophes and accidents.

“As regards natural calamities, most danger comes from floods, hurricanes, typhoons, storms, earthquakes and draughts. As to man-caused events, it is mostly big fires, accidents at potentially dangerous facilities and electric energy systems”, Shoigu noted.

Asked by RIA Novosti, the emergency relief minister noted that authors of the Atlas tried to make it maximally accessible for broad readership, not only specialists, so that “on one hand, it does not turn into popular reading and, on the other hand, provide valuable information”.

“I assure you that any literate person can grasp what is written. He will find in the Atlas very many useful things”, Shoigu said.

The minister also said that, from now on, the Atlas will be annually reissued with specifications and amendments. Also, preparation of an electronic version is planned.

According to Shoigu, active work has begun to prepare emergencies atlases for every federation entity with city and region particulars.

He said that over 120 authors from all Russian ministries, agencies and scientific institutions worked on the first publication, coming out in only 200 copies.

Asked by journalists if terrorists may make use of the Atlas, Shoigu said: “Some risks will be published in a closed portion of the Atlas”.


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