Sukachev Forestry Institute of the Siberian Branch of the RAS in the early 1990s launched studies into the impact of discharges from the Norilsk industrial region on the environment (Krasnoyarsk Territory). Other allied institutes: of Biophysics (Krasnoyarsk) and Theory of Light of Atmosphere (Tomsk), Central Siberian Botanical Gardens (Novosibirsk), Scientific and Research Institute of Agriculture of the Far North (Norilsk), the Siberian Regional Scientific and Research Institute of Hydrometeorology (Novosibirsk) have joined in the work since 2001. Drs. Sc. (Biology) A. Abaimov, Yu. Yershov, M. Gladyshev, Cands. Sc. (Biology) M. Telyatnikov, A. Shishkin, Cand. Sc. (Agriculture) V. Ivanov tell about some of the results of their work in the newspaper Science in Siberia of March, 2005.
The territory was divided in three zones according to the level of anthropogenic effects: aside from the air-dust plume of Norilsk enterprises, at the skirts of the latter and finally in its center. Two plain, two submontane and three key mountain areas were surveyed, which gave a comprehensive view of the condition of the region tundra ecosystems. Thus, starting from the first zone, plant development damage was registered. Lichens proved to be the most sensitive to toxic discharges. Less sensitive were mosses, blueberry, and swampy, moderate humid poiums were most resistant. Grasses, some forbs and willow even showed indirect positive responses to pollution.
Gmelin and Siberian larches prevail among the trees in the area under review, though birches and fir trees can also be found. The most important negative natural factors for them are shallow depth of seasonal soil thawing out and unfavorable temperature conditions. Permafrost represents a watertight stratum and determines a low yield of a root layer. The significant portion of dead trees is not a rare thing among local forests, even among relatively safe woodlands it reaches 20 percent. As much as 30-
40 percent of ... Читать далее