EDM Global projects in Russia are:
– Education and advocacy for water stewardship and sustainability
– Baikal Lake: Waste management solutions
Focus on waste management solutions for a cleaner Baikal Lake
What is the project?
The project intends to demonstrate efficient, cost-effective, and sustainable solutions for plastic waste management on the Baikal coast. Priority is given to practical business – like waste processing solutions – to generate new incomes for local communities.
What is the problem?
Lake Baikal, the world’s oldest and deepest freshwater lake, is in a very poor ecological condition. For many years, human activity has been contaminating the lake as pollution from local communities, solid waste and uncontrolled tourism.
Who is affected?
Contamination of Lake Baikal has had an adverse effect on communities living nearby. It has also impacted on Lake Baikal’s extensive flora and fauna, which includes many species endemic to the lake.
How are the people and wildlife affected?
Water pollution has brought about changes in the environment and wildlife populations of Lake Baikal. It has caused damage to the freshwater ecosystem and decreased freshwater access for local communities.
What is EDM doing to help?
The EDM project has been raising public awareness of sustainable water use in relation to Lake Baikal. A series of volunteer activities has been organized to clean up the lake and improve eco-trails in the area. An ecological education programme is also underway.
To implement project objectives, EDM has both involved local communities and formed partnerships with businesses in the area.
What impact has EDM had?
A significant amount of solid waste has been collected from the shores of Lake Baikal.
What future impacts are expected?
The EDM project aims to organize separate waste collections in the future. Because of this, it is expected that more waste will be recycled, rather than thrown into the waste stream to end up in Lake Baikal.
EDM’s educational programme and work with businesses are also expected to help change behaviour relating to waste disposal in the Lake Baikal area.
What problems has the project faced?
The main problem in the Lake Baikal area is the lack of facilities necessary for recycling. EDM has been working with local businesses to rectify this.
What has UNDP contributed to the project?
UNDP has contributed overall control of the project. It has elaborated and implemented the Baikal Box and the H2O environmental movie festival. It also worked on an education programme for local community representatives to establish a water museum in the city of Ulan-Ude.
What has Coca-Cola contributed to the project?
Coca-Cola encouraged local Coca-Cola System employees to participate in Lake Baikal clean-up activities. It also organized press tours for representatives of the mass media, enabling them to participate in the clean-up activities.
In addition, Coca-Cola organized a photo exhibition around 10 Russian cities in order to raise awareness about waste disposal and Lake Baikal. And it gave its support to the H2O movie festival.
How can the project be replicated?
As a community-based project, the Lake Baikal project can be replicated by other local communities living near water sources with ecological problems.
What lessons have been learned?
Education is very important. As EDM provided information on the benefits of ecological tourism, the local administration provided its full support and began to develop the programme itself.
Educating school teachers can broaden the audience of a campaign and raise environmental awareness among children and their parents.