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Chelyabinsk Region

Status: Region (oblast)
Capital: Chelyabinsk
Administrative division: 27 districts, 30 cities/towns, 13 urban-type settlements, 1,260 rural localities, 24 uninhabited rural localities
Area: 87,900 km2
Chelyabinsk Region Population: 3,603,339 (2002)

The Chelyabinsk region is located at the eastern part of the South Urals, at the border of Europe and Asia. Geographically there are two parts: a mountainous area of approximately a 150 km and a river area of approximately 220 km along the Ural River.
Chelyabinsk is one of the major industrial centers of Russia. The most important industry here is metallurgical production. The most significant metallurgical companies are Chelyabinsk tractor plant, Chelyabinsk metallurgical combination and Chelyabinsk tube rolling plant.
Economy
Chelyabinsk Region is fifth in Russia in relation to industrial output. Agricultural production makes up only about 5% of the gross regional product. The region is particularly known for iron and coal production, but also has large deposits of talc, salts and gold.
The enterprises of ferrous metallurgy in Chelyabinsk produce 31% of all Russian output of steel, and 15% of steel tubes. The retail industry has experienced a significant boost in 2008 of 130, 5 %. The total turnover amounted up to 213329, 6 millions of rubles.
One of the important industries here is agriculture. Over 50% of the agricultural output is consists of meat production. In GDP the contribution of agricultural industry is approximately 4, 6 %. The Chelyabinsk region specializes in vegetable growing and animal breeding.
Small businesses
Small sized businesses are an important role for de-monopolization. Nowadays, one third of the economy is occupied by small and medium sized businesses. In 2007 a total of 25900 small enterprises were active in Chelyabinsk region.
Import and export
Out of all the Ural regions Chelyabinsk together with the Sverdlovsk region has the highest import figures. Import in the Chelyabinsk region has noticed a significant boost. Whereas the import share of the Ural into Chelyabinsk was 18 percent in 2006, it soared to 26.1 percent in 2007.
The major import partner in 2007 was Kazakhstan; they hold a share of 47.48 percent of the total import. Secondly is Ukraine with 10.17 percent and thirdly China with 9.02 percent.
In 2007 Chelyabinsk's biggest export partner was Iran, they exported 14.40%. The Netherlands hold fourth place with 10.08%.
The exported goods are mainly ferrous and non ferrous materials, which encompasses 88 percent of the total Export. Next to that, the overall export of the Chelyabinsk region in 2007 significantly increased by 30.4 percent (In comparison with 2006). In terms of dollars, the total import for the Chelyabinsk region was 2685, 70 million dollars.

Karabash, Chelyabinsk Oblast is the problem ecological region.

source of the photos

Karabash (Russian: Карабаш) is a town in Chelyabinsk Oblast, Russia, located 90 km north-west of Chelyabinsk. Population: 15,942 (2002 Census); 17,006 (1989 Census)

It was founded in 1822 as a settlement of gold-miners. Town status since June 20, 1933.

A copper smelting plant is situated in the city, and its toxic waste has created extremely large amounts of pollution and serious health problems for the inhabitants.

Karabash has been described as the most polluted town in Russia as it is home to the Russian Copper Company's main smelter.

Situated in the South Ural, roughly 90 kilometers from Chelyabinsk, Karabash is a fairly large city. It not only covers a land area of approximately 1822 square kilometers, but it is home to nearly 16 000 people. The city of Karabash was founded in 1822 as a prospector town and it achieved city status in 1933. Today Karabash in Russia continues to be an industrial center for the region with major ecological repercussions resulting from years of smelting activity.

In 1822, prospectors started searching the Sak-Elga - a taiga river in the area - for gold. It wasn’t long before rich deposits of copper-sulfur gold-bearing ores were discovered in the valley near ‘Black Top Mountain’ or mount “Karabash”. This led to the establishment of a prospector’s town and the residents of this new little town soon started enjoying massive wealth. By 1834, the first Soimanovski copper-smelting plant was opened to process the copper that had been discovered here. This was followed by a second plant in 1907 and it wasn’t long before a third one was on the way. A newer and more modern copper-smelting plant was eventually built in 1911, continuing a long standing tradition of copper mining and smelting activity in the area. Much of the finished product is exported via rail and the nearest railway station is Pirit.

Though Karabash in Russia has been a center of immense economical activity and wealth for centuries, it is certainly not an ideal place to travel to today. In fact, years of industrial activity have left this once charming city in need of dire attention. The continous extraction and processing of copper ore and non-ferrous metals has sadly resulted in the town being given the nickname of ‘the Black Point of the Planet’. The area has been declared a ‘zone of ecological emergency’ and much effort has been put into deciding how best to improve the situation without negatively impacting on the lives of those who make a living from this process.

The problem


The smelter town of Karabash lies in the Chelyabinskaya region of the south Urals, 1,300 kilometers southeast of Moscow. The town originally developed due to large copper deposits and in 1910 a smelter was built here specializing in the production of 'blister copper'. Immense sulfur dioxide emissions, fall-out of metal-rich particulates and mounds of black slag are thought to be responsible for higher incidences of birth defects, skin diseases and internal organ failure among the residents of this town.

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