Saturday, August 31, 2013

Norilsk by chance: did someone say "anthropocene"?



I don't know if you have the same hobby; but sometimes I go looking places at random using "Google Maps". At times, it is remarkable what you can find. For instance, here is a picture of the town of Norilsk, in Northern Siberia, that I had no idea existed; I just landed there by chance. Look at the smoke: what the hell are they doing there? (they also seem to have a nuclear plant, look at the upper right of the figure).

Searching in Wikipedia, I discovered a number of interesting things: Norilsk is a metal mining town in the Northern area of the Krasnoyarsk region. Probably, the smoke is the result of smelting something. Apparently, pollution generating by smelting is a disaster, there. Wikipedia says that acidic pollution is so bad that there is not a single tree left standing for 50 km around town: I can barely imagine what this kind of pollution does to people's lungs. I also learned that Norilsk is the only major city completely built on permafrost. Well, they are going to have big problems because of that!
 
And, a few km South of Norilsk, look at this!


 
It is a gigantic open pit mine that most likely feeds the smelters in town. The buildings look abandoned, but the mine looks still active: look at the excavators, down in the pit.


So, did someone say Anthropocene? Yeah......

8 comments:

  1. http://www.londonstockexchange.com/exchange/prices-and-markets/stocks/summary/company-summary.html?fourWayKey=US46626D1081USUSDIOBE

    http://www.bloomberg.com/quote/GMKN:RU

    http://www.nasdaq.com/symbol/nilsy

    Also Google:
    norilsk abramovich deripaska putin

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  2. Nothing to see here, please move along. It is SIBERIA! Italians aren't worried about Siberians. Amerikans aren't worried about Siberians. Apparently also, SIBERIANS aren't worried about Siberians!

    In a few millenia, Mother Nature will clean all this up. No problem

    http://CollapseCafe.com now Open for Bizness. Drop in for some Cappucino. ;)

    RE

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  3. its actually very hard to find somewhere on land, in lowland areas anyway, that is NOT modified, damaged or scared by humans in some way. but perhaps the most dramatic illustration of the anthropocene is those shots of earth from space showing all the cities lit up. pure entropy.

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  4. Norilsk got some fame this year: 32°C - Bikini girls in Siberia!

    http://www.theatlanticwire.com/global/2013/07/its-90-degrees-siberia-and-people-are-sunbathing/67663/
    http://siberiantimes.com/ecology/casestudy/news/norilsk-breaks-records-for-arctic-heat-in-a-new-sign-of-changing-weather-patterns/

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  5. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  6. I believe most of the nickel used in the world comes from Norilsk. The giant Norilsk-Talnakh nickel–copper–palladium deposits were formed within magma conduits in the Siberian Traps eruptions. These eruptions happened at the Permian–Triassic boundary, 251 to 250 million years ago when huge floods of lava covered large areas of Siberia.

    I share your Google Earth addiction. and it sure can suck time. About a month ago I became very interested in Siberia north of the Arctic circle. Americans know very little about Siberia and so it is a land of mystery to me. I also realized a large part of Siberia is significantly further north than Alaska, a fact I hadn't noticed before. My curiosity was piqued.

    I deleted and reposted this comment because I wanted to add this last part.

    I recall in my own Norilsk investigation learning that the smelters had polluted the ground around the city so badly that the dirt could be scraped up and processed to recover palladium at a profit. But I can't recall where I discovered that factoid.

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  7. Ugo...I don't know if you will read or reply to this comment, but I have been reading your work and this blog on and off for quite a while. I believe in the LIMITS to GROWTH and had a question for you.

    I read all about the SINKING of the E-CAT and wanted your opinion of this supposed "Revolutionary Technology" that the supposed Powers that Be have purchased and shelved from the public. I run my own website and I have had a few contacts by individuals who believe this new technologies that have been kept off the public's view will save us.

    Here is just a few sentences from one of the replies:

    A few new technologies involve plasma, magnetism & water/hydrogen (hydrogen can be split from oxygen via vibrational frequencies). In my 15 years of research of these technologies, I have found that many inventors are threatened by TPTB, their technologies taken in grab orders by the Gov't, or purchased and shelved.
    ----------

    Ugo... do you believe that there are these so called revolutionary energy technologies that will allow us to still live the life of ABUNDANCE, or are they TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE?

    Any comments would be greatly appreciated.

    Steve
    SRSrocco Report.

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  8. Nice to see there are more people as mad as me and search for strange places on earth. I wrote a novell about the area. It is in the Frisian language and called Guozzeflecht. Check it here: http://stikelstekker.blogspot.nl/ and here: http://www.archiefleeuwardercourant.nl/vw/article.do?id=LC-20100820-NO07007003&vw=org&lm=guozzeflecht%2CLC#
    ISBN 978 90 330 0910 5

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Who

Ugo Bardi is a member of the Club of Rome and the author of "Extracted: how the quest for mineral resources is plundering the Planet" (Chelsea Green 2014)