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Russia Loses 6% of GDP to Ecological Problems – Putin

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Ecological problems are piling up in Russia and damaging the country’s economy, Russian President Vladimir Putin said Tuesday at a meeting of the State Council for Ecological Development.

“Yearly damage to the economy amounts to 6 percent of gross domestic product, and if we add the impact on people’s health – up to 15 percent,” Putin said.

According to the president, the most serious problem is pollution: Russia needs to decrease exhaust emissions into the atmosphere, water, and soil by using better technologies in the industrial sector. 

“Some companies are already implementing their environmental programs, but not all,” Putin said.

Unauthorized dump sites are another reason for concern. Currently the amount of waste stored at such dump sites exceeds 30 billion tons, Putin said. 

“People are dumping waste where they see fit and how they see fit, and such [unauthorized] dump sites occupy 48 thousand hectares” of land across the country, he said.

Current legislation is strong enough to tackle the problem, Putin added, but it has not come into force yet.

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