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GEOGRAPHY, ENVIRONMENT, SUSTAINABILITY

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Vol 5, No 2 (2012)

GEOGRAPHY

4-17 199
Abstract
Regional policy depends on efficient administrative systems for designing and implementing strategies, and places considerable demands on Member States’ public administrations in terms of e.g. financial management and monitoring; project selection procedures; ex ante environmental impact assessments and cost-benefit analyses; and the monitoring and evaluation of outputs, results and impacts. EU member states have taken a range of different approaches to the administration of regional policy.
The construction of regions in the countries of Eastern and Central Europe became one of the important debate topics for preparation for EU membership. Despite the numerous similarities in the changes that have taken place in the territorial structures of the Eastern and Central European countries, the differences in the responses individual countries gave to the challenges of regional development and the varied results of their development efforts demonstrate that the “Eastern European Bloc” is at least as heterogeneous as the former member states of the European Union. EU accession opened up a Pandora’s Box in the countries of Eastern and Central Europe. The fundamental issue of how unitarily structured states can be set on a decentralised path became the centre of debate. The paper introduces the Central and Eastern European achievements of region building processes and searches for an explanation of the reasons for the difficulties of Eastern and Central Europe in regional construction; it summarises the administrative and political development pre-requisites of the transition to a regional outline of the possible advantages of a regional institutional system in the creation of the Cohesion Policy ensuring a decrease in regional differences.
18-35 182
Abstract
It is a well-known fact that science is international in nature and has no national boundaries. The authors of the paper presented herein used the combination of the words “new geography” and “Ukrainian reality” in attempt to focus attention on the complexities of geography in a fundamental change of social development objectives and methods of management. The authors are concerned about the decrease in the degree of influence of geography on various spheres of human life and consider the distinctive characteristics of geographical science through the presentation of the features of its construction methods (object-oriented, subject-oriented, and problem-solving methods). The weakness of geography is manifested in the lack of knowledge refined to natural laws. But it is precisely a geographer who forms a specific individual model matrix of relations using geographic logic his/her perceptions.
Given the current transformation processes taking place in Ukraine, there is now a new international challenge in complex conditions of development: limited resources; environmental, demographic, and financial problems; and much more—“re-discovering of the world.” It is natural that each country meets challenges in its own ways. Therefore, by using the combination of the words “new geography” and “Ukrainian realities,” the authors attempt, on the one hand, to focus attention on the complexities of the modern formation and development of geography and, on the other hand, to emphasize the advantages of geographical studies of various spheres of human activity. They demonstrate that in Ukraine, own vectors and the development trends of geography were formed and brought real results that were positively valued not only by the scientific community, but also by society as a whole. There is a large gap between scientific and educational geography. Two possible options to reduce this gap are suggested. Examples of the implementation in Ukraine of some projects based on achieving “new geography” are provided.
36-50 287
Abstract
The hydraulic mission of the Soviet Union has transformed Central Asia’s Syr Darya River into a governable entity. After the dissolution of the Soviet Union the river system disintegrated and conflict arose over the operation of the main dam and reservoir of the river: the Toktogul. Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan have widely different and diverging sanctioned discourses on how the dam should be operated and on the nature of the water itself. These discourses have had a significant impact on the hydro-politics of the river basin and the operation of the dam. The central argument of this paper is that both the decline of the Aral Sea, and the potential conflict between the states are driven by the same modernist governmentality of the river.

ENVIRONMENT

51-67 162
Abstract
High biodiversity and degree of endemism of mountain biota strengthen the mountain regions’ status for the territorial nature conservation. Analysis of the protected areas’ representativeness in various mountain regions of Russia shows some discrepancy between their quantity, square and regional biodiversity originality. The biggest divergences are marked for the Northern Caucasus. The main problems: small area of the protected territories and also cluster character of their spatial distribution, mostly in the high mountains are not supposed to conform with the highest values of the regional flora’s and fauna’s uniqueness, to compensate representativeness of the protected biota and, in anyway, to correspond with the purpose of nature protection frame—the protected territories ecologic network’s forming. The situation in the Urals, Siberia and the Far East seems to be better. The large areas of the protected territories are in general agreement with the high originality of the nature ecosystems. Nevertheless each concrete case needs analysis of the regional biota’s and ecosystems’ biodiversity distribution within the protected areas, including character and (or) unique elements of the regional biodiversity to be held. The development of the effectual territorial conservation of mountain regions needs differential approach. The creation of the large representative parcels of nature landscapes in the key-areas has the considerable meaning in the low-developed regions, difficult to access. And well-developed regions have the necessity of nature protected territories’ network development and the planning of the ecological frame’s forming. The territorial biodiversity conservation, including the system of federal, regional and local levels with protective conservation of the rare species has to be combined with ecosystem’s restoration, especially in the zones disturbed by erosion, recreation and military actions. Also it is necessary to develop the new types of the protected areas—ethnic-cultural territories of traditional mountain land-use. The biological resources’, ecosystems’ and ecological detriments’ evaluation is appropriate for the mountain biodiversity conservation. The latter is aimed to raise the effectiveness of the nature conservation activities and to prove the introduction of new mechanisms of their financing.
68-77 148
Abstract
Conditions of formation and development of landslides and debris flows in the Black Sea coast of the Caucasus and on Sakhalin Island were considered. They are formed under the influence of heavy rainfall under the influence of the Mediterranean cyclones outlet in the Black Sea coast of the Caucasus and of the Pacific cyclones outlet on Sakhalin Island in the same macro-circulation processes. Activity of landslides and debris flows in these regions has been shown to be connected with certain types of atmospheric circulation during the XX—the beginning of the XXI century. Based on these results, possible increase in the activity of landslides and debris flows, in the Black Sea coast of the Caucasus and Sakhalin Island, is suggested.
78-94 228
Abstract
We synthesized recent field-based estimates of the dissolved ions (K+ Na+ Ca2+ Mg2+ Cl- SO42- HCO3-), biogens (NO3-, NO2-, PO43-)(C, mg/l), heavy metal (Fesum, Mn, Pb) and dissolved load (DL, kg/day), as far as suspended sediment concentration (SSC, mg/l) and suspended load (SL, kg/day) along upper Selenga river and its tributaries based on literature review and preliminary results of our 2011 field campaign. The crucial task of this paper is to provide full review of Russian, Mongolian and English-language literature which concern the matter fluxes in the upper part of Selenga river (within Mongolia). The exist estimates are compared with locations of 3 main matter sources within basin: mining and industry, river-bank erosion and slope wash. The heaviest increase of suspended and dissolved matter transport is indicated along Tuul-Orkhon river system (right tributary of the Selenga River where Mongolia capital Ulanbaatar, gold mine Zaamar and few other mines are located). In measurement campaigns conducted in 2005, 2006 and 2008 the increase directly after the Zaamar mining site was between 167 to 383 kg/day for Fe, between 15 and 5260 kg/day for Mn. Our field campaign indicated increase of suspended load along Tuul river from 4280 kg/day at the upstream point to 712000 kg/day below Ulaanbaatar and Zaamar. The results provide evidence on a potential connection between increased dissolved and suspended matter fluxes in transboundary rivers and zones of matter supply at industrial and mining centers, along eroded river banks and pastured lands. The gaps in the understanding of matter load fluxes within this basin are discussed with regards to determining further goals of hydrological and geochemical surveys.

Sustainability

95-110 205
Abstract
Change in agricultural land use in Samara Oblast is analyzed on the basis of agricultural statistics, field observations, and satellite imagery. Besides the general decline in animal husbandry, three drivers of spatial change are uncovered—accessibility to the major urban areas, natural setting, and ethnic mix. Land surface phenology metrics are in line with these drivers. In particular, satellite imagery confirms the large amount of fallowed land in Samara. Overall, land abandonment reached its peak in the late 1990s, and was subsequently reversed but the amount of land used in crop farming has not reached the 1990 level. Spatial differentiation is also analyzed across three types of farms—former collective and state farms, household farms, and registered family businesses.

NEWS AND REVIEWS

111-113 112
Abstract
ALL-RUSSIAN SCIENTIFIC AND PRACTICAL CONFERENCE “LANDSCAPE PLANNING”
114-120 72
Abstract
IGU REGIONAL CONFERENCE IN SANTIAGO


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ISSN 2071-9388 (Print)
ISSN 2542-1565 (Online)