Scientists will evaluate the level of soil pollution in extractive fields of Yamal
Scientists from Saint Petersburg State University will study specifics of migration of substances that pollute soils in northern regions of oil and gas production in Western Siberia in conditions of climate change and warming in the Arctic. The collected data will allow evaluating the level of pollution, as well as understanding specifics of distribution of dangerous chemicals. The information was given to TASS by Stepan Kukushkin - Associate Professor, Department of Geo-Ecology & Environmental Management, the Institute of Earth Sciences, St. Petersburg State University.
“Climate changes in the Arctic contribute to the increase in the depth of permafrost thawing, what can lead to the increase in intensity of migration of pollutants in the process of human technogenic activity. Therefore, it needs to understand, whether there is the potential danger of increase in the area of pollution, or areas with high levels of dangerous substances will stay local. In the project we are interested in Nadym-Pur-Taz region (Yamal-Nenets Autonomous Okrug), where hydrocarbon production is actively conducted”, the scientist said.
According to him, the project includes field work on the territory of licensed areas of oil, gas, condensate fields. A comprehensive geo-ecological characterization of the natural complex with taking samples of soils, rocks, soil water and indicator plant species will be fulfilled. The received samples will be analyzed in the laboratory to define the level of pollutants in them. The research was supported by the Russian Foundation for Basic Research, which provided a grant for three years.
“Evaluation of resistance of tundra and forest-tundra landscapes to chemical pollution and identification of potential for their self-purification will be the groundwork of the project. In addition, the results of the study can be used by extracting companies that operate in the region, it will allow them to reduce risks of possible negative impact on the environment”, Stepan Kukushkin said.
Nadym-Pur-Tazovskiy region is an important region of hydrocarbon production in Yamal-Nenets Autonomous Okrug, where the largest extractive fields are located: Medvezhye, Urengoyskoye and Yamburgskoye.