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P3.Nikitenko Irina, a journalist of the “Nezavisimaya Gazeta”. I want to add some more facts. The air is being polluted by acid rains as well. Very dangerous pollutants are sulphur and nitrogen oxides. These gases are released by factories and power plants when fossil fuels are burned and by cars. These oxides reach high into the atmosphere and mix with clouds to form rain that is acid as vinegar or lemon. Acid falls down to Earth as rain and snow.

P4. Krivonosov Victor, a journalist of the newspaper “Segodnya”. I’d like to add something on this topic. A major problem with acid rains is that it does not obey national boundaries. The planet’s wind carries pollution hundreds of miles away from its original source. Black snow fell in Scotland in 1984. Acid rain affects everything it falls on. In Sweden more than 18,000 lakes have become acidic, 4000 of them very seriously indeed. This kills fish. In Austria, if nothing is done, there will be no trees left by the end of the century. Buildings die too. Some of the most beautiful historic buildings in the world are being eaten away by acid rains. Notre Dame, St.Paul’s Cathedral have been damaged. In this connection I’d like to ask a question to all of our guests: What can be done in this direction?

P5. (Министр химической промышленности). This is the question many people are beginning to ask. It is an important question for all of us. I think all enterprises must have modern purifying systems that lower the level of pollution. But economical situation in Russia too complicated and it isn’t always possible to install such equipment, because many plants and factories have no money. Our scientists are working hard to end acid rain. Russian scientists are looking for ways to make coal burn more cleanly. We need strict pollution control.

P6. Kiva Dariya, a journalist of the “Izvestiya”. I want to touch upon a subject on railways as one of the sources of pollution. I live near the railway. We breath the air polluted by the waste of the railway transport. Every year railway enterprises throw into the atmosphere nearly 40 thousand tons of harmful substances. Railway transport throws out into the atmosphere 300 kinds of harmful substances which change the structure of air. It’s very dangerous for the health of people, especially for those whose houses are near the railway track. These substances get into the water, so many rivers, oceans and lakes are very polluted. When people build and exploit railway stations they change the structure and properties of the soil. I’d like to ask the Minister of Railway Transport. Tell us, please, if there is any ecological commission at the Ministry of Railway Transport, and what its functions are. What is done by this organization and are there any positive results?

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