Cover Osteuropa 7-9/2020

In Osteuropa 7-9/2020

The refuse and the rulers
Waste management and power under Putin

Robert Argenbright

Deutsche Fassung


Russia does not have a modern, efficient waste policy. There is no attempt to avoid waste, and just five percent of household waste is recycled. No high-capacity recycling system has been put in place, and there is a lack of awareness of the issue among the general public. At the same time, an increasing number of citizens are protesting against waste disposal sites. The plan by the Moscow city authority to dispose of its waste over 1,100 kilometres to the north-east in the Archangelsk region was hugely controversial. The waste problem has become a national crisis. In order to remedy the situation, waste policy must be reformed from the ground up. Yet to date, economic and political structural problems under the Putin system have hindered any attempts at change.

(Osteuropa 7-9/2020, pp. 305–318)