Ukraine is one of the most mined countries in the world, because almost a third of the area – about 200 thousand square kilometers – needs mine clearance.
Explosive objects not only take lives, but also adversely affect the environment from the moment the mine hits the ground and even after detonation, according to the head of Mindovkol Ruslan Strelet on Facebook.
How mining harms the environment:
- Destroys the forest
Forests are one of the most vulnerable ecosystems to mining. After all, the detonation ignites dry grass and wood, which can lead to a forest fire. If there is no fire, the debris gets into the trees. Due to corrosion, the plant is poisoned.
- Threatens food security
It is impossible to grow agricultural crops in the mined area. Farmers are forced to reduce the area of cultivated land, which puts pressure on resources and depletes the soil.
- Spoils the soil
Fragments of ammunition release heavy metals into the environment, in particular chromium, zinc, iron, copper, and Mercury. These substances reach ground water and enter the human and animal food chain.
- Destroys biodiversity
Animals often come across mines. Confused and frightened, they leave the territory and migrate en masse. Often, new territories do not have suitable conditions for the existence of the species, which is why biodiversity is reduced.
- Hinders the protection of nature reserves
In Ukraine, according to preliminary data, more than 175,000 rounds of ammunition have already been neutralized, and an area of 67,639 hectares has been surveyed. In general, mine clearance will take about 10 years. However, the help of European colleagues can significantly speed up this process.
“There is already a bitter experience of Ukrainians hitting mines. It’s a warm time of year. Life returns to the liberated territories. I urge everyone to avoid potentially dangerous areas,” the shooter stressed.