of the international scientific-practical conference
"Ecological and social-economic aspects of catastrophic natural phenomena
in the Carpathian region (floods, mud flows, landslides)"
The International scientific-practical conference “Ecological and social-economic aspects of catastrophic natural phenomena in the Carpathian region (floods, mud flows, landslides)” was held from 21st to 24th of September, 1999 in the town of Rakhiv (Transcarpathian region, Ukraine). The conference was organized by the Ministry for Environmental Protection and Nuclear Safety of Ukraine, Ministry of Emergencies and Defence of Population from Consequences of the Chornobyl Atomic Energy Station Disaster of Ukraine, Carpathian biosphere reserve and Institute of ecology of the Carpathians of the NAS of Ukraine with the financial support of the Danube-Carpathian Programme of WWF-International. In the conference work participated responsible specialists of the Ministry for Environmental Protection and Nuclear Safety of Ukraine and Ministry of Emergencies of Ukraine, representatives of local authorities and the public, scientists, specialists of nature-protected institutions from Ukraine, Poland, Hungary, Switzerland, Romania, Slovakia and the U.S.A. – in general 181 people.
In the process of conference work 16 plenary and 53 section report presentations were represented, 17 persons participated in the discussion. According to the results of confernce work, Proceedings of the Conference, including 94 papers, were published.
In the result of discussions, participants of the conference came to a conclusion, that the Carpathian region is attributed to one of the ecologically most vulnerable regions in the Central Europe. Being characterized by a compound geological structure and a complex of unfavourable hydrometeorological conditions, the Carpathian mountains serve as an origin place for various natural hazards. Having a dense network of rivers and streams, they are attributed to the regions with a heightened amount of water. In the result of a centuries-old intensive economic management, the ecological balance was disturbed here. Besides, big and irregular amount of rain-fall and negative changes in structure of the biogeocoenotic cover proved to be the main factors of such dangerous for the mountains phenomena as floods and freshets, mud flows, landslides and erosion processes with the catastrophic outcomes. Moreover, in the last decades these phenomena become not only more frequent, but cause more and more damage to the economy of Ukraine and neighbouring countries.
Establishing a fact, that origin of the catastrophic floods, mud flows and landslides depends on natural factors, which to a considerable extent are intensified by the global pollution of atmosphere, forestry, logging, agrarian and engineering-communication activity in the mountains, and that decrease of negative results of these natural hazards is scarcely probable without orientation of the national economic complex to the side of development the ecologically safe types of activity and international support of the interested neighbouring countries, the international scientific-practical conference recommends:
At the intergovernmental level
To work out an intergovernmental programme of study the catastrophic natural phenomena processes formation in the Carpathian mountains, to create for this a special international scientific-technical co-ordinating Council and a regional system of ecological monitoring of avalanche, mud flow, landslide and flood dangerous sites in order to form an information bank with the aim of forecasting natural hazards in future and working out of the preventive measures.
To work out by governments of the Carpathian region countries a system of special measures, aimed to orientate national economic complex in the mountains to the side of development the ecologically safe types of activity, paying special attention to the introduction of tax and customs privileges for those objects of management, which introduce ecologically safe technologies in forestry and agriculture.
At the national level
To improve by the Ministry of Agriculture and Provisions, State Committee of Forest of Ukraine, regional state administrations a system of anti-flood and anti-erosion measures, to ensure their introduction in the upper riches of the mountainous river basins and streams. To consider, that one of the most important of them should be refusal or restriction of clear cuttings in forests, decreased plough up of the steep slopes and overgrazing of cattle in the mountainous meadows, prohibition of the unsystematic construction of roads network, working out of strategy on the construction of forest roads system and transport roads in the whole.
To revise by the State Committe of Forest of Ukraine a normative base of forestry management and timber use in the mountains, to work out a draft of the law of Ukraine "On mountainous forests" and to prepare a complex programme "Carpathian forest". To pay special attention to the introduction of modern technologies of forestry management and timber use in the mountainous conditions, increase of woodland, regeneration of the upper timber line, regeneration of the native stands and native faunistic complexes.
Taking into account big recreational potential of the Carpathians, to ask the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine to consider tourist-recreational industry as a priority direction for the development of the Carpathian region, to work out a national programme of the recreational potential development of the Ukrainian Carpathians and to prepare a draft of the law "On mountainous tourism".
To pay special attention by the Ministry for Environmental Protection of Ukraine, scientific-research institutions, regional state administrations to the development of ecological network in the Ukrainian Carpathians and its integration to the European econetwork, creation of the transboundary international nature-protected reserves, territorial expansion of the existing and establishment of the new nature-protected objects. To focus special attention on the establishment of nature-protected areas in the upper riches of rivers.
At the regional level
To establish under the aegis of the NAS of Ukraine a centre of different branches of industry to coordinate scientific research and monitoring of natural elements with the aim of regularity evaluation, prediction and protection of territories of the Carpathian region from the negative development of natural and technogenic processes. To study the influence of floods and freshets on the plant and animal world of the region.
To envisage in the complex programmes of regional ecological safety a system of measures on the prevention and elimination of dangerous outcomes of the natural elements. To include to these measures transfer of all forestries of the Ukrainian Carpathians to the autumn-winter felling, beginning from 2000, exept fellings, connected with the conduction of forestry, and also successive transfer of timber loging in all forests of the Ukrainian Carpathians, regardless of the property types, from tractor to the rope and cartage types. With the aim of more operative elimination of catastrophic outcomes of the natural hazards in the Ukrainian Carpathians, and also to promote scientific investigations of this problem to create a Carpathian ecological fund.
To consider formation of ecological culture and consciousness of the population of mountainous regions as one of the main tasks of regional scientific, educational and public organizations. To renew the speciality "Ecological geology in the regional institutions for the training of specialists on study, prevention, prediction and monitoring of the natural hazards.
To renew by the regional state administrations an independent ecological examination and public discussion of projects on the construction of structures, which could stimulate natural hazards or yield to their influence.
To publish in press the conference recommendations and to send them to the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine, Ministry of Emergencies and Defence of Population from Consequences of the Chornobyl Atomic Energy Station Disaster of Ukraine, State Committee of Forestry of Ukraine, and also to the competent state bordies and scientific institutions of the Carpathian region.
To thank the staff of the Carpathian biosphere reserve for organization of the scientific-practical conference and to wish them a fruitful work in the sphere of nature conservation of the Carpathians.