Translation from Russian into English
"Sovetskaya Rossiya", December 20, 1979
"The usual route", A. P. Kurkovsky told to the driver, "Zamoskvorechye
We have made the first stop at Balchug, near a thermal power station.
Pedestrians have been stopping by our small green UAZ and after reading the sign
on the board "Atmospheric Cleanness Control" curiously looked inside,
where there were instruments. Not such a long time was needed to take several
samples of the air. Similar stops have been made in the downtown and near the
Likhachev auto plant. And now our mobile laboratory comes back to Ostankino with
the samples of air. Here, near the 541 meter high TV-tower, there is a small
building. The sign at the front entrance says "The State Committee on
Hydro- and Meteorology of the USSR. Central High-rise Hydro-meteorological
The first question asked to Anatoly Pavlovich Kurkovsky, the chief engineer
of the observatory - "Why "high-rise"?
We approached the window of the office, and he pointed to the TV-tower:
- You see, there are masts attached to its body at various intervals. They
have gauges installed on them recording temperature and humidity of the air,
wind speed, pressure, level of pollution of air from 0 up to 503 meters. Such
measurements are being taken 24 hours a day. It enables us to "see"
the atmosphere of the city on a vertical scale, which is very important to
control the cleanness of the atmosphere of the city. Now our observatory is the
only in the country that has capabilities to monitor the near-ground layer of
the atmosphere up to a half-kilometer height with help of a modern automated
computer system. Besides, the observatory has systems for monitoring the
pollution of the air in the city (ANKOS-A) and the water in the Moscow River (ANKOS-B).
All this together with five meteo stations located in different areas of the
city and two mobile laboratories help to conduct the monitoring of the air that
Now we are talking about starting creation of a system to monitor and evaluate
the state of the natural environment. And this in turn will give us an
opportunity possibility to warn about its unfavorable changes.
To make the air of Moscow as clean as possible - this is the purpose of the
experiment, being conducted in the capital for comprehensive studying the
atmosphere of the city with multimillion population, advanced industry and
transportation. This experiment is a part of a long-term complex scientific
program for protection of the nature and the environment of the capital.
"And what is already accomplished," I ask my interlocutor.
As a rule, thermal power stations and some plants make a large contribution to
polluting the air of cities with the sulfur dioxide. So over the last years
almost all the industry of Moscow and the majority of its TEC have been
converted to use natural gas. Over 1200 gas-cleaning and dust-catching devices
have been installed or repaired on more than on three hundred enterprises. Over
three hundred hygienically unfavorable enterprises have been moved out of the
Operation "Atmosphere" goes on a wide front.