On June 4, the first pine seedlings lot was delivered to the Shies station in Arkhangelsk Oblast, where activists had managed to stop the construction of a landfill for waste import from Moscow. Activist Vera Goncharenko, who lives in the village of Urdoma, told 7x7 about this. Young plants will be used for the site’s biological recultivation, carried out by the project's investor, Technopark LLC, after its cancellation.
According to the activist, activists who monitor the reclamation of the territory at the Shies station helped to unload the first lot of seedlings. On Saturday, June 5, the second lot of seedlings was supposed to be delivered to Shies. They will be planted on an area of 15 hectares to restore the forest previously cut down for the landfill. The contractor, according to Vera Goncharenko, promised to execute all the works in five days.
"But the weather is hot at Shies right now, so we have not seen anybody plant anything. They said that they were going to plant them in the morning and in the evening to prevent scorching sunshine from killing the seedlings. I talked to the engineer who manages the plantings. He said that plants with a root-balled tree system were being planted and that this guaranteed 80% acclimatization. But this is what he said. I do not know whether it is credible," Goncharenko explained.
The Technopark Company announced planting more than 33 thousand tree seedlings as the final stage of the reclamation of the territory at the Shies station together with announcing the closure of the project in October 2020. Garbage workers promised then to bring extra 45 thousand cubic meters of potting soil to the site and to fertilize the seedlings themselves in order to restore the fertile soil layer.
On June 2, the company announced that all the work on preparation for the biological recultivation was executed full-scale: fertilizers had been delivered, the final territory leveling and site marking for planting were being carried out. Also, according to Technopark, the analysis of soil samples taken on Shies in mid-May showed that it was suitable for planting.
Vera Goncharenko, who comes to Shies from time to time to monitor the reclamation process, told 7x7 that not the whole territory of 15 hectares was prepared for forest plantation: part of the site had not been filled by the general contractor yet. In addition, according to the activist, reclamators have not brought additional soil to Shies, but simply leveled the existing one.
"In general, the reclamation is almost finished, the contractor has dismantled almost everything, except for service roads, which are still required for filling the site. But everything is done so-so. Some slabs, concrete foundations, litter for the landfill, some construction debris have been simply buried, rather than removed," she stated.
Protests against the construction of a landfill for the import of waste from Moscow at the Shies station (the border of Arkhangelsk Oblast and the Komi Republic) took more than a year and a half. As a result, the Moscow City Hall has not included Shies in its territorial waste management scheme for the next 10 years. The Government of Arkhangelsk Oblast has excluded the project from the priority projects’ register, and the Technopark Company promised to reclaim the territory by the summer of 2021. Some activists declared the protest stopped, others decided to keep the watch until the investor finished the reclamation of the site.