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Water History

, Volume 10, Issue 2–3, pp 207–222 | Cite as

Industrial waste, river pollution and water politics in Central Russia, 1880–1917

  • Anna Mazanik
Article

Abstract

The article explores how Russia’s governmental authorities, scientists, engineers, and industrialists engaged with the problem of factory waste and water pollution. It argues that industrial pollution of rivers emerged as a subject of considerable public debate in Russia in the 1880s and the enforcement of water protection laws grew stricter towards the end of the Empire. However, the vagueness of the legislation and the lack of clear quality standards opened the way for contingency and arbitrariness in the persecution of violators. This persecution did not lead to the reduction of pollution in the imperial period, but it raised awareness of the dangers of industrial discharge for riverine environments.

Keywords

Industrial pollution Waste treatment Rivers The Russian Empire Moscow 

Notes

Acknowledgements

I would like to thank Erin Corber, Brendan Röder and Ann Röder for their comments on this text and Andrei Davydov from the Central State Archive of Moscow who helped me find the necessary archival materials. This article was written during my postdoctoral fellowship at the New Europe College (Institute for Advanced Study).

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V., part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Central European UniversityBudapestHungary

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