CHAPTER 1 THE KOMI REPUBLIC RICHARD W. AISHTON The Komi Republic is located in the northeastern corner of the European part of the Russian Federation. Its global position is approximately 590 north latitude to the Arctic circle and is on the west side of the Ural Mountains from 660 to 480 E longitude. (Refer to Map #1 in Appendix) Komi measures approximately 416,800 square kilometers, approximately the size of New England, with a population of nearly 1,250,000 people. The capital city of Komi, Syktyvkar, has a population of about 225,000 inhabitants. It is nearly 200 years old, which is young by Russian standards. Komi possesses its own cultural origins which researchers determined to originate in the Vwym River valley. The culture is closely related to Eskimo culture due to its northerly location. Aside from Russian language Komi also has its own language, of Finno-Ugric origin which is in the Uralic language family. Komi was one of Stalins favorite gulag locations and, in fact, there are well over 1,000 gulags located in the Komi Republic, some of which are still active as prisons. The Komi Republic is considered a part of Russia's Northern Economic Region which is noted for its forest products, mining and fishing industries and the production of metals such as aluminum. Major natural gas and oil industries located in Ukhta create an interesting dynamic between Komi, Moscow , International or Multi-national Oil Corporations and environmental organizations. Komi industries stratify the Republic as follows: north - coal mining and fishing; central - oil and natural gas; south - wood products. The Komi capital of Syktyvkar is situated at the confluence of the Syssola and Vwychegda Rivers. The surface and ground water resources surrounding Syktyvkar that are needed to satisfy industrial, agricultural and municipal demands are becoming incrementally less sufficient. These two rivers along with the huge Pechora River are already significantly polluted by nutrients or industrial wastes. In 1994, a major break in an oil pipeline severely polluted the Pechora and several other streams in the Pechora watershed. Wildlife resources have been heavily depleted by industrial development and pollutants, as well as by decreases in critical habitat associated with widespread replacement of primary forests with secondary forests and draining of marshes. Fish resources have been degraded because of deteriorated conditions for reproduction by pollution of water bodies and major and minor spills. Within the boundary of the Komi Republic lies a natural reserve called a zapovednik. This reserve, the Pechoro-Illych, is located in the central taiga and was designated as a biosphere reserve by the former Soviet Government. The Pechoro-Illych, preserved strictly for pure research, is nearly 1.5 million acres of untouched wilderness.
The Need for Environmental Standards The opening section of this paper provided a general description of the Komi Republic. This section begins to build a case which supports the development of specialized environmental policy for the Komi Republic. The paper relies on both historical data taken from literature and the World Resource Database (WRD) and current information gathered on site in Komi to justify my contention for restructuring the Komi Republic's environmental policy. Case I Since the breakup of the Soviet Union in 1991 Komi has developed complex political and environmental interrelationships with the Moscow government seat. Although such circumstances are not uncommon in the Russian Federation, Komi and Moscow display some unique dynamics. The Komi Republic is rich in natural resources, which include vast natural gas and oil resources and the largest pulp and paper complex in Europe. The potential for exploitation of these resources by foreign investors is a genuine concern. I foresee a complicated situation. For example, companies in Komi may decide to enter into to contractual agreements with foreign investors for hard currency. Moscow could decide to challenge these contracts on the basis of land and resource "rights" granted under the former Communist regime. A dispute would likely develop between a Komi company, Moscow and foreign investor. This dispute process would all but ignore a very important consideration, not only in Komi, but throughout Russia: the environment. Environmental remediation in Komi is at a standstill, as it is in the rest of the Russian Federation. The cause of this standstill appears to be a chicken-egg relationship. How does one address environmental problems without a stable economy and why should one not immediately undertake environmental remediation since, without it there may be a drastic, negative impact on the economy? I suggest a strategy that incrementally addresses both, simultaneously. The general plan begins with the following narrative: Russia has a land area of 16,995,800 square kilometers, nearly twice that of the United States. Its southern borders are located near 500 N latitude and the northern borders are above the Arctic circle (66.70N lat.). With this degree of geographical diversity one uniform set of environmental laws seems inadequate, yet this is exactly what one finds in the Russian judiciary system. Refer to the map of forest biomes of the Russian Federation in the appendix.(Map #2). The variation of ecosystems present in each of the different biomes virtually orders a policy structure that considers this variability and addresses it with an appropriate policy for each biome. The pure size of the Russian Federation creates a substantial logistical problem for discussing the implementation of specialized environmental policy. However, the Komi Republic is a more manageable model with which to defend the notion of a new, more specialized environmental policy that will enable local and regional economies to strengthen along with the development and refinement of a new environmental policy. I contend that the optimal method of addressing these problems is to allow each geopolitical region (such as the Komi Republic) to have the power and freedom to undertake necessary strategies specific to their geographical location, since each area will have a different set of problems. The ultimate goal will be to allow the Komi Republic to structure its own environmental policy, with Moscow supplying only general guidelines. Each geopolitical region will have more extensive knowledge of their own area. Since the judicial branch of the Russian Federation is ineffective an alternative resolution strategy is appropriate. The use of consensus-building strategies will afford Komi the decision-makers the opportunity to arrive at a mutually beneficial implementation plan that will address both economic and environmental needs. Refer to Map #3 and biome chart in the appendix to further understand the contention for specialized environmental policy structure. The map delineating the biomes in Komi illustrates the ecosystem differentiation. Six different biomes are located in Komi, including two variations of tundra. Particular management practices or other external effects from human interaction will have a different impact on each particular biome. Ecosystem management principles recognize the need to develop impact assessment for the biotic variation similar to that found among the different biomes in Komi. It is evident that management strategies developed for tundra regions vary from other areas lacking the permafrost which defines the Arctic tundra. Therefore, it is imperative that the Komi Republic adopt an environmental policy which allows for the variation dictated by these different biomes. Komi not only is constrained by the general environmental standards issued from Moscow but is also constrained by the hierarchy of political structure. The organizational chart (Chart I in Appendix) portrays the continued trend in one set of standards for environmental regulation from the former Soviet Union to the Russian Federation, of which the Komi Republic is a part. The organizational chart also points out another weakness in the current system of management. The map of Komi, which shows the 20 regions, (Map #4 in appendix) and the organizational chart are used to help explain the next contention. Each of the 20 districts in Komi has an identical structure from the economic ministry down through the organization. Therefore, each of the seven departments under the jurisdiction of the Economic Minister is also in direct contact with the Economic Minister in Moscow and, as the chart demonstrates, the Komi Economic Minister can be bypassed by directives received at the district level directly from Moscow. The potential for duplication or confusion is very high. In addition, the enforcement network and fine system for the Federation is antiquated and ineffective. The Komi district map also delineates another weakness of their system. Each individual district employ only three inspectors and they each have a specific area of assignment, which makes a very inefficient system. For example, if one inspector is a fisheries expert and happens to find a forestry-related violation he must contact the forestry specialist in his district to evaluate and deliver the penalty, usually a fine.. The system of fines is antiquated and has not kept up with inflation. An accidental spill of to 1000 to 10,000 gallons of oil into a waterway of any type carries a fine of 100,000 rubles - $20.00. Environmental incentives are non-existent with such a system. The Constitution of the Republic of Komi states the following: Article 64, subsection (e), the use of natural resources; protection of environment and maintenance of ecological safety; especially protected nature reserves; protection of monuments of history and culture are common jurisdiction of the Russian Federation and the Republic of Komi. In order to establish a positive trend with environmental remediation there is need for significant policy modifications that will allow the Komi Republic to formulate, modify and enforce its own environmental policy. Case II The collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 signaled a change in world order and precipitated a wealth of speculation about the future of the Russian Federation and the other Republics of the Former Soviet Union (FSU). Within the former Soviet system are also found a number of republics called Autonomous Republics. They were established under the Stalin regime but nothing changed except these republics were allowed to call themselves autonomous. From Stalins perplexing ideal of maintaining ethnic diversity originated this autonomous designation. Each republic still operated as required under the Soviet system. The Komi Republic is one of these so-called Autonomous Republics and is the subject of this paper. The death of Constantin Chernyenko in March of 1985 and the subsequent appointment of Mikhail Sergeevich Gorbachev as the secretary general of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (CPSU) marks the beginning of a period of significant change in the Soviet Union. The methodology of ideological reform under Gorbachev was not dissimilar to previous changes in Soviet thinking. Gorbachev took on the task of uskornie (acceleration) of scientific-technical progress. Launching reform of this type displaced developed socialism rather than destroying it outright, consequently developed socialism was allowed a foothold by those unwilling to change. Nevertheless, as we know, Gorbachev was able to displace or counterbalance the ideology of developed socialism with his uskornie of technical, social and economic reform. Ultimately these were part of perestroika (restructuring). It is productive to address the specific nature of the dynamics between the rapidly eroding Soviet Union and current problems in the Russian Federation and the Komi Republic. I propose to use transition theory as outlined in Chapter 14 of (Drake) , Towards Building a Theory of Population-Environment Dynamics,(Ness, Drake, Breslin, 1992) as an evaluative mechanism. We know that the collapse of the USSR occurred in 1991 and by using several indicators I surmise that the transitions will point to SOMETHING imminent during the years approaching 1991. Since we already know what happened then the focal point is available. Can the transitions be used as a predictive mechanism? I hypothesize that transition theory will illustrate trends with which to make general predictions that substantiate the fall of the USSR. If similar transitional trends are evident utilizing environmental-related data specific to Komi then I theorize an environmental abnormality exists. This abnormality must then be addressed through appropriate scientific investigation. Decisions based on these data may lead to policy modifications. This paper includes a more detailed narrative of the factors that led to the breakup of the Soviet Union. Clearly, the transitions would not actually predict the breakup but the could illustrate, with different indicators, that something would happen within a few years or less. By combining supporting data and transitions a correlation will appear that is mutually supportive. In order to explain this presumption a number of transitions have been prepared from different subject areas. If all of these areas indicate a change or continued trend in a direction that implies impending problems then it seems clear that transitions could be used as a significant correlative factor in an overall predictive mechanism. The next part of this paper will explore the idea of transitions and their usefulness in more detail. What led to the breakup of the Soviet Union? The election of Gorbachev as secretary general of the CPSU in March of 1985 testified to the Politburos recognition that the country was in a very serious long-term crisis which would eventually jeopardize its standing as a great power alongside the United States. Gorbachev was the candidate of those who wanted change. He realized that change could no longer be postponed. Gorbachev intensified the goals of Yuri Andropov, his patron and mentor, to reduce party corruption and investigate non-labor income, that is, Gorbachev lobbied against people who received earnings not acquired in officially recognized employment. He also sharply restricted the sale of alcoholic drinks and banned their consumption on official occasions. This was the first part of perestroika. Gorbachev also launched glasnost (publicity) which was supposed to indicate less secrecy and eliminate censuring of the press. The catalyst for perestroika and glasnost occurred in April of 1986 - Chernobyl. Foreigners were indignant that they should learn of an explosion affecting public health around the world from a non-Soviet source (the Swedes were supposedly the first to call attention to the increased atmospheric levels of radiation). Gorbachev may have been the architect of the breakup of the USSR but it surely was in a more reactive role than a proactive one. Once he loosened the grip of the former Soviet system he and the socialist government were overwhelmed. Shortly after Chernobyl Gorbachev held a meeting with a delegation of writers and told them to print the truth. They responded with attacks on censorship and on environmental pollution. Books including Solzhenitsyns Gulag Archipelago were published and the realities of Stalins regime were revealed in their entirety. Sakharov was released from exile in Gorky and immediately made his presence known, even to Gorbachev, who ordered his release. Gathering momentum toward freedom throughout 1987 and 1988 the Baltic countries (Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia) started with sharp commentary about environmental issues and quickly moved toward the freedom lost in 1940 as part of the Nazi-Soviet Pact. On March 11, 1990. Lithuania proclaimed independence and the Latvian and Estonian Supreme Soviets followed suit soon thereafter. August 19, 1991, a small of group of opponents within the party attempted to take over the government in a coup attempt. The attempt occurred a day before the Treaty of 9 + 1 was to be signed. The 9 + 1 describes a treaty with the 9 remaining republics (those republics which had no plans for complete independence) plus Moscow. The treaty would allow for broader de-centralization of power and would virtually exclude much of the former Communist Politburo. The Politburo was composed of men who made their livelihood from the Communist Party's abuse of power. They would not relinquish this power and their elite lifestyle without attempting a takeover. This failed coup attempt left Boris Yeltsin in a position of power and effectively neutralized Gorbachev. The failed attempt marked the official end of the USSR.
The Economic Facts Behind the Collapse of the Soviet Union When Gorbachev and his advisors took power in 1985 a national systemic crisis confronted them. It was a crisis of effectiveness. The Soviet Union was an economic disaster. Its performance in almost every sphere but the military was below not only world standards, but the standards set by its own leadership. Official party reports were completely inaccurate.. The party-state administration was highly bureaucratized, penetrated by a corporatist spirit, and thoroughly corrupted by Mafia-like informal associations. With regard to the economy, in a speech given at the Plenum of the Central Committee in February 1988, Gorbachev summed up the state of affairs with a remarkable statement: In the 20 years previous to his accession to power, the Soviet national income, with the exception of production of alcohol, did not increase in real terms at all. The combination of the trends of Soviet economic and technological stagnation with the explosive growth in the capitalist world was potentially, and in part actually, calamitous to the Soviet Union and to the domestic and international aspirations of its ruling circles. During the mid-1980s the Soviet Union was falling behind major capitalist nations in key comparative economic indicators. Most important, the technological gap between the Soviet Union and advanced capitalist countries was widening with increased momentum. The Soviet Union produced, for example, twice as much steel as the United States, with a GNP half the size of the United States, and still encountered chronic shortages of steel. The explanation for this anomaly is quite simple: The Soviet Union wastes steel by engaging in an unnecessary and unproductive enterprise. The amount of steel in Soviet capital and consumer goods is comparatively exorbitant. (This record of enormous waste is also true of lumber and other primary products, most notably the wasteful consumption of electricity and oil.) Such practices, when combined with the invasion of Afghanistan in 1979, served to further deteriorate an already huge imbalance between the military-industrial complex and the foreign/domestic economic situation. The transitions found on the following page are graphic representations which, when combined with the narrative of the events leading up to the collapse of the USSR, make a clear representation of the factors contributing to that collapse. The figures which comprise the analytical base for the transitions were taken primarily from the World Resource Database (WRD). The transitions portray parallel information which, in stable relationships, generally follow a parallel path, when A goes up B goes up and when A goes down B goes down. The interesting behavior of the transitions occurs when the two parallel relationships either converge or diverge. Something must have happened to cause this behavior. Therefore, the transitions indicate some type of aberrant nature and underlying causality and, when combined with other factors, act as a reliable indicator or support predictive mechanisms. My examples focus specifically on the Soviet Union leading up to 1991. The curves primarily, but not exclusively, demonstrate economic trends. Those indicators graphically evince diverging or converging curves which, under stable conditions, display parallel behavior. I theorize that creating similar transitions, but with the use of environmental data from Komi, will illustrate behavior similar to the transitions from the Soviet data leading to the collapse in 1991. If the transitions from Komi do show similar dynamics then I contend that there are environmental problems which require further scientific analysis. The following six relationships graphically delineate trends which illustrate a change in the norm: 1) external debt vs current borrowing; 2) total labor force vs agricultural labor force; 3) energy production vs energy consumption; 4) energy exports vs energy imports; 5) roundwood imports vs roundwood exports. (6) crude birth and death rates: (Information taken from the World Resource Database - WRD) Figure #1 Figure #1 illustrates an increasingly diverging trend in external debt versus current borrowing from a point in time between 1987 and 1988. This trend continues and as the graph indicates the trend demonstrates a more pronounced divergence from 1990 toward 1991. I consider this an indication of the increasing devaluation of the ruble on the world market. In addition, the high debt makes the Soviet Union a poor risk to lenders, which causes the current borrowing trend to decrease. (Information taken from the World Resource Database - WRD) Figure #2 Figure #2 graphically represents the relationship between total labor force and agricultural labor force. I speculate that this graph explains the movement of the labor force from agricultural areas to the military-industrial complexes. Agriculture is a labor intensive industry in the Soviet Union and the loss of this work force will necessitate the need for food importing. (Information taken from the World Resource Database - WRD) Figure #3 Figure #3 shows the relationship with the energy production versus energy consumption in the Soviet Union. Notice the sharp drop in both production and consumption beginning about 1989. A projection of this graph shows an intersection of the energy curves, which indicates the need for conservation measures or indicate the need for energy purchases from another source. (Information taken from the World Resource Database - WRD) Figure #4 Figure #4 corresponds with Figure #3 regarding energy usage. The energy production and consumption figures predicted an intersection. Measures were taken to correct this trend. Energy exports were severely cut back. Imports were reduced, again most likely due to the poor buying power of the ruble on the world market. (Information taken from the World Resource Database - WRD) Figure #5 Figure #5 above is another transition curve which also solidifies the fact that Soviet Union is in a critical economic situation. The roundwood imports have been reduced and the projection line indicates that the imports will continue to decline. This transition again provides a graphic illustration indicating an economic downturn. (Information taken from the World Resource Database - WRD) Figure #6 Figure #6 has been projected manually simply to illustrate the significant trend in the crude birth and crude death rates. 1990 appears to be at the beginning of a transition which graphically represents a serious situation for the people of the new Republics formed from the Soviet Union. The previous six transitions (Figures #1 - #6) were created by data which, when displayed graphically, delineated negative trends. The transitions did not predict anything specific but when viewed together they made a compelling argument that something negative occurred or was beginning to occur. By combining these graphic observations with existing history the transitions are consistent with what we now know about the collapse of the Soviet Union. It is my theory that if environmental data gathered in the Komi Republic displays negative characteristics similar to transitions in figures #1- #6 then further, quantitative investigations are appropriate, and I theorize that these investigations will conclude that Komi's environmental situation has not stabilized but continues to deteriorate. Therefore, the Komi Republic has need to address this situation through environmental remediation as outlined by a specific environmental policy. Two questions arise when reviewing the transition dynamics: (1) Why didn't some officials within the government of the Soviet Union recognize what was happening? (2) How will the FSU finance remediation of environmental problems and reverse the serious downward trend of economic indicators? Part of the explanation for both of these questions follows: According to official statistics (which were later found to be false), Boris Gosteev, the minister of finance, reported in October 1985, that the Soviet Union had generated a budget surplus of 4.1 billion rubles. Belatedly in 1988, he corrected himself to reveal that on the contrary, the 1985 budget had not run a surplus but a deficit of 37 billion rubles, or about $59 billion. Gosteev anticipated that in 1989 there would be a budget deficit of 35 billion rubles or about $56 billion; the previous figures reflect an exchange rate of $1.60 = 1 ruble. Figure #7 below illustrates the REAL, world-market value of the ruble during the time period from 1989 to the present. (Breakup of the USSR occurred in 1991). (Compiled from yearly trips to Russia by the Richard W. Aishton) Figure #7 Referring to Figure #7, Gosteev's deficit figures are far beyond 37 billion rubles since the real market value of the ruble far in excess of his exchange rate of $1.60 = 1 ruble. The Former Soviet Union (FSU) has broken into a fragmented economic disarray. The Russian Federation is the main player with whom this paper is concerned because my interest relates to the Komi Republic, which resides within the boundaries of the Russian Federation, yet to a degree has some freedom beyond Russia. This is a complex relationship that has a unique dynamic, which will be explored. Hedley Bull argues the point of anarchy and how it is incompatible with society in the international trade arena. I understand where this could be loosely applied to the Moscow - Komi situation, or any other place in the Russian Federation. Russia needs to become a permanent, reliable fixture on the international market yet its history also does not allow it completely sever with the past practices quite yet. The old Communist elite are now entrenched in the new capitalism yet still do not fully understand how to separate from the anarchist/socialist model under which they lived and thrived. Presently the situation has changed in the FSU, but has it really? According to my interpretation of Double-Edged Diplomacy (Putnam, 1992), Russia may not be very far from its usual situation in world trade. For most countries involved in international relations, whether it is trade or dispute resolution the politicians or decision-makers were involved in a two-level game. The decision-makers are required to make decisions based on what constituents at home desire (aka. domestic table) and another set of decisions and rules are needed to deal with what politicians and businessmen from foreign countries are asserting (aka the international table). Question: Does Moscow actually care about domestic policy or is it too busy trying to get into the international arena where Russia can stand to make political and economic gains? According to my theory based on proposals discussed in Double-Edged Diplomacy (Putnam, 1992), Russian Federation government officials face decisions on an international level that conflict with domestic interests. These officials make decisions based on improving economic gains and consequently they ignore domestic problems, which include the terrible environmental conditions. A more free press in Russia and greater world media attention creates a forum in which government officials are more exposed to criticism. President Boris Yeltsins heart condition has jeopardized his political future. Current acting President Viktor Chernomyrdin, a former businessman, must now devise a strategy in which to address both the economic and environmental conditions in the Russian Federation. Case III The economic situation for the average Russian citizen is still bleak but another specter looms in the shadows of the Russian country - environmental degradation. In the wake of Soviet Communism the Soviet Union has left a legacy of inconceivable and potentially irreversible environmental damage. In land area, the Soviet Union was the largest country in the world. In population in 1990 it ranked third, after China and India. For decades it was the leading producer of oil and steel, the owner of a quarter of the planets forest reserves and an equal portion of its fresh water. Yet it beggared itself by endangering the health of its population - especially its children and its labor force - the productivity of its soil and the purity of its air and water. The simply unbelievable environmental legacy left to the people of Russia defies the imagination. Not only are five regions - the Urals, East and West Siberia, Central and North Russia - on the brink of ecological disaster, but, where air quality was monitored, it is theoretically impossible to live in every seventh city. There is 20 times as much nitrous oxide as the normal international standard in the air of Gorky (Nizhny-Novgorod), Smolensk and Omsk; 33 times as much sulfur dioxide as the normal international standard in Nikel; 183 times as much methyl mercaptan as the normal international standard in Volzhsky, 289 times in Arkhangelisk, 478 times in Novodvinsk; the benzopyrene content in Novokunetsks air is 598 times above the maximum permissible by international standards. The air in Novokuznetsk, in fact, ranked on as the fifth most polluted in the USSR. Most of these cities are in a Catch-22 situation whereby the large industry is such an integral part of the economic structure of the city that closing the factory down to retrofit it with proper pollution control systems would disrupt the flow of funds for the municipal budget, throwing the city into economic chaos. Stalins desire to demonstrate Soviet superiority led to the acceleration of industrialization while leaving behind all other aspects of development including health and environmental safeguards. The United States followed a similar developmental strategy but in the early 1960s the US had the benefit of people like Rachel Carson (Silent Spring, 1961) who had a democratic forum in which to raise questions that initiated scientific research. Decisions based on this research insured proper stewardship of the earth. Unfortunately, the Communist society was interested only in being superior, at all costs. The price the Russians and other Republics of the FSU have paid is far beyond the benefits. Health minister, Aleksei Yablakov, has completed a two-year study which shows a bewildering array of ominous health trends including increases in anemia, tuberculosis, infectious hepatitis and acute upper respiratory tract infections which are linked to the intensity of pesticide use, water pollution and suspended particulate matter well in excess of established international norms. The graphic representation below illustrates the trend of infectious hepatitis. (Compiled from data in Ecocide, Murray Feshbach, 1992.) (Figure #8) Figure #8 projects the trend in the occurrence of hepatitis. Hepatitis (which includes both hepatitis A & hepatitis B) is commonly used as a reliable indicator for water quality. Figure #8 illustrates an increasing trend which projects continued poor quality water for the Russian Federation. This trend demonstrates the need to formulate a program designed to remediate the poor quality of water in Russia. It also adds another component to the overall environmental picture of Russia. The environmental situation in the FSU is serious, and with the addition of nuclear waste problems the situation is grave. The eventuality for all of the indiscriminate use of nuclear technology is a somber future for the citizens of the former republics of the USSR. As many as 120 civilian underground explosions have been carried out in the USSR over the past four decades and about 1,000 more under military operations. There are 54 civilian nuclear power plants in the former USSR, operated in ways that would be considered less-than-safe by International standards. There are many radioactive waste sites, even in densely populated areas: 636 in Moscow; 200 in Omsk and 1,400 in St. Petersburg. These commonplace sources take a toll in morbidity, as do the dramatic events, such as the nuclear accident at Chernobyl in 1986. Over 650,000 people were exposed to radiation at Chernobyl and a 1992 commission found 1,700 cases of thyroid cancer (200 of them children) believed to have resulted from that accident. Currently, the average life expectancy in men in the Former Soviet Union is lower than the pension age. Compare the following graphic projection, which further delineates future trends in birth and death rates in Russia. (Information taken from the World Resource Database - WRD) Figure #9 (Information taken from the World Resource Database - WRD) Figure #10 When one compares the previous two curves (Figures #9 & #10) the differences in the projections do not appear to be serious since the deaths project a range of deaths from 4000 to 5500 (using linear or exponential methods) in the year 2030. The births projected to the year 2030 are estimated reach approximately 5800 to nearly 6000. The erratic nature of the births curve is a concern.. The births have displayed this behavior since 1950 and would appear to be normally eccentric in the Russian Federation (and FSU) population. I submit, however, that this erratic nature is a product of decades of environmental problems and will be more susceptible to increasing spikes and valleys as the concentrations of pollutants increases. The Komi problem described earlier in this paper is duplicated all over the Former Soviet Union. In this particular instance there are clear data projections and a definite potential program to reverse the environmental destruction that so defines the legacy of the FSU. The Komi Republic has some unique features that make it both attractive and practical to begin a new environmental program. The remoteness of its location make it necessary to govern more independently. Its remoteness has also contributed to the fact that less environmental damage has occurred there than in other regions of the FSU. Komi is the site of the cleanest water in Europe (located in the Pechoro-Illych Biosphere), which is something worth saving. The mighty Pechora River is the last stronghold of virgin Atlantic salmon fisheries. The city of Ukhta is the focal point of the oil and natural gas extraction coming out of the Siberian oil fields. The largest pulp and paper complex in Europe is located 10 miles from the capital city of Syktyvkar. This paragraph illustrates the conflicts and potential for conflicts among environmentalists and capitalists in the Republic. Since the people have long been oppressed it is only natural to ignore the environment for economic gain which would make them at least comfortable. The Komi people realize that the land exists for future generations. They have a very active Green Party in Komi and have a published newspaper called Cheesta Pechora. (Literally translated this means clean Pechora) Officials in the Troitsko-Pechorsk district (see map #2 and attachment in appendix) have taken measures to further protect the Pechoro-Illychsky biosphere which is located within the area of this district. A one-half kilometer wide buffer zone has been delineated on the ground around the entire perimeter of the biosphere to insure protection against encroachment from logging. Legal pressure is limited, but the citizens of the district apply public pressure to maintain the pristine conditions of the biosphere and in this district the pressure has had a positive effect. However, long-term, legal solutions to the environmental problems seem less positive since policies and laws originate within the government and the bureaucratic snarl that pervades the legacy of the Communist Party. The Komi Republic has taken a positive initiative by developing a project name of Eckom. The project, infused in the educational system, is teaching children at all grade levels about the dangers of improper ecosystem management. But without significant policy modifications or changes even this worthwhile project may be rendered useless. The following two graphic projections pertain specifically to the Komi Republic. The curves confirm that Komi also appears to be consistent with data from the Russian Federation and FSU. In both instances the curves indicate trends that require further attention and more sufficient quantitative analysis. The first set of curves (Figure #10) relates the frequency of upper respiratory infections in the Komi Republic which are presumably linked to air pollutants from pulp and paper complexes, coal mining facilities and other industrial complexes with insufficient or non-existent pollution abatement equipment. (Information from the Komi Government - Tentakov, 1995) Figure #11 Although the death rate does not appear to seriously accelerating it nevertheless indicates an increasing trend. Trends such as this are not considered serious but when combined with other data a complete picture is constructed which indicates serious long-term, health problems. Poor health is directly proportional to poor environmental conditions. (Information from the Komi Government - Tentakov, 1995) Figure #12 As one can see there is an increasing trend in both curves. Unless remediation strategies are implemented this trend will continue and may begin to accelerate. The ecosystem variation dictates a varied environmental management program. However, the only method to initiate such a program is to bring about a change in policy at the government level. With mathematical projections illustrating negative trends it seems logical to explore other relationships to determine if similar trends are evident. When more data becomes available for the Komi Republic transition dynamics will be applied as it was for the Soviet Collapse. If these transitions display similar behavior to those transitions explored in the collapse and quantitative data support the transitions' behavior then there is a need to implement timely and fundamental policy changes are necessary. The legacy of the CPSU (Communist Party of the Soviet Union) still maintains a hold on the bureaucratic process. It will be a difficult task to persuade the Russian government to allow Komi and other regions in Russia to develop a new set of specific environmental laws and regulations, with an active and efficient enforcement arm. By utilizing the processes described in this paper along with additional quantitative data perhaps changes in the environmental policy structure can be realized. The following summarizes desirable policy recommendations for the Komi Republic based on the interpretation of data acquired during research: 1. The Russian Federation has such a huge land area and such ecosystem diversity it is not reasonable to try to administrate environmental policy with one general guideline. Therefore, it is incumbent upon the Russian Federation to consider modifying the structure of policy administration. The Federation could model their policy similar to the United States. Moscow would supply general guidelines as a baseline with which to work. The environmental policy structure would be decentralized and the responsibility for the development of specific environmental standards would be the task of the administrative apparatus located in the seats of government at the Republics level. 2. The development of the enforcement section of the judicial system in the Federation Government will be slow. Therefore, I recommend that at the Republics level a task force is assembled, with appropriate distribution among government officials, technical experts, environmentalist and industry representatives. This task force can begin to formulate a workable plan to allow for environmental remediation and still maintain functional economic standards. What is the incentive for this type of consensus-building? Agreements which originate from this type of consensus process would be "grandfathered" out of new laws enacted by the Moscow government at a later date. Of course there would be limits to this exemption. 3. The Komi Republic needs to adopt specialized regulations which reflect the ecosystem diversity in the Republic. A "biome environmental policy" should be considered as one alternative. Technical assistance for such a policy is easily obtainable from the Ural Division of the Russian Academy of Sciences in Syktyvkar. 4. Refer to the organization chart of the Komi government (In the Appendix). The minister of natural resources must have direct contact with Moscow. The current organization creates the potential for confusion and redundancy. 5. Each of the 20 districts in Komi must have the freedom to form planning boards and to adopt local ordinances which are, in turn, recognized and aided by the Komi and Moscow governments. Local enforcement will be successful only if backed up by government policy. 6. The number of inspectors in each of the districts must be increased. The geographic size of the districts and poor road systems create inefficiency. A larger number of inspectors will alleviate some of the inefficiency problems. The inspectors should be required to have a strong scientific and environmental background with practical experience and university backgrounds preferable. And they should be paid accordingly. Their work will have a significant effect on the overall environmental policy and remediation process. The Komi Republic is a unique area in the Russian Federation. Due to its vast wealth of natural resources it has enjoyed relative prosperity compared to other areas of the Russian Federation and the FSU. The Komi people and the Russians who live in Komi share the common goal of maintaining Komi as a sustainable society. Poor economic conditions and environmental degradation threaten this sustainability unless properly addressed. By combining the ideas outlined in this paper with other innovative ideas from the Komi residents it is likely that Komi will succeed. This success, however, is a function of environmental policy and decision-making strategies. Komi and Russia are quickly approaching a critical period when poor decision-making could cause their serious environmental situation to accelerate towards disaster. If they act quickly it not too late for resolution. APPENDIX Attachment: Maps #1 and #2. APPENDIX Attachment with Biome Map (#3) Areas and delineations for the forest biomes of the Komi Republic Biome Percentage Square Kilometers of Area Mountain Tundra 10.2 42513.6 Arctic Tundra 2.4 10003.2 Wooded Tundra 6.4 26675.2 Northern Taiga 40 166720 Central Taiga 38 158384 Southern Taiga 3 12504 100 416,800 APPENDIX Attachment with Komi District Map (#4) and flow chart region name of region area population administrative population 1000 sq km 1000's of people center 1000's of people 1 Syktyvkar 0.7 242.6 Syktyvkar 226.3 2 Vorkuta 24.2 209.7 Vorkuta 113.5 3 Vuktill 22.5 26.3 Vuktill 18.8 4 Inta 30.1 68.4 Inta 59.9 5 Pechora 28.9 92.4 Pechora 64.8 6 Sosnogorsk 19.4 62.1 Cosnogorsk 31.2 7 Usinsk 30.6 70.9 Usinsk 53.2 8 Ukhta 10.3 140.8 Uhkta 110.9 9 Ijem 18.4 24.3 Ijma 4.1 10 Knyajpogost 24.6 36.7 Emva 18.9 11 Koigorod 10.4 12.2 Koigorodok 3.1 12 Kortker 19.7 27.7 Kortkeros 4.8 13 Preloz 13.2 29.4 Obyachevo 5.8 14 Syktyvdin 7.4 28.2 Vwilgort 11.2 15 Sissola 6.2 19.3 Vizinga 7.5 16 Troitsko-Pechorsk 40.7 25.3 Troitsko-Pechorsk 10.8 17 Udorsk 35.8 31.8 Koslan 4.2 18 Ust-Vweem 4.8 40.6 Aikino 3.8 19 Ust-Kulom 26.4 39.7 Ust-Kulom 5.7 20 Ust-Tselem 42.5 17.3 Ust-Tsulma 5.4 Total 416.8 1245.7 References