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Environment

05.08.2015, 19:51

Crowdsourcing project participants propose options to develop Moscow’s environmental strategy for next 15 years

Crowdsourcing project participants propose options to develop Moscow’s environmental strategy for next 15 years

About 80-90 percent of the participants in Moscow’s Environmental Strategy to 2030 crowdsourcing project supported measures that would restrict high emission vehicles in Moscow, create more pedestrian areas and plant greenery along motorways, Head of the Department for Environmental Management and Protection Anton Kulbachevsky said at a news conference.

The project is aimed at improving the urban environment in Moscow. Discussions and voting were held between 20 and 31 July. Environmental experts and Moscow residents took part. “Over 4,700 participants between 16 and 87 years old were registered,” he said.

Project participants were asked how to improve Moscow’s urban environment in six areas: air quality, water quality, greenery, waste, noise pollution, and environmental education.

The participants posted over 10,000 questions and comments and made about 1,340 unique proposals.

One of the least expected issues in the air quality and noise areas was traffic restrictions. “Respondents proposed various kinds of restrictions — from banning vehicles in various city zones depending on vehicle emissions to a proposal to reduce traffic lanes in central Moscow and even ban personal cars in the centre,” he said.

Project participants proposed certain benefits for drivers who use public transit instead of their private cars such as offering them favourable loan terms and granting fare-free public transport with a vehicle registration certificate.

As part of the air quality discussion, participants filed 1,163 proposals. After voting, 69 of these will be included in the strategy and 79 will be submitted to expert review.

“When discussing noise pollution, respondents were mostly upset about the noise made by modified cars and motorcycles with free-flow or no muffler at all especially at night,” he said.

Participants suggested some approaches to mitigating noisy cars or motorcycles at night; building sound barriers; tightening police control over noise limits of vehicles; creating effective monitoring of electromagnetic radiation levels, and a transparent system for the distribution of such sources in Moscow as well as improving quality and service life of road surfaces.

A total of 706 proposals were received on this point; of these, the experts chose 191.

Muscovites insisted on the need to separate waste collection, to create points of collection for recyclable materials and toxic waste. “Over 80% of participants voted to introduce separated waste collection points within walking distance of residential buildings, offices, schools, shops, public areas, bus terminals, railway stations and air terminals,” he said.

Some people proposed educating various groups of the population to correctly dispose of waste, introduce monetary compensation for recyclable waste and financially reward blocks of flats where residents use separated waste collection.

“Some crowdsourcing project questions and proposals indicated that Moscow’s Environmental Strategy should include a section on drinking water. Participants made a total of 614 proposals including 167 unique ideas,” he said.

Participants supported ideas on tightening control over water protection areas, developing land runoff systems in pedestrian areas, developing standards on improving bodies of water, updating water transport and designing a campaign for reducing water consumption. Participants proposed stocking specific types of fish in waterbodies to help purify the water.

The city has launched several crowdsourcing projects with the following results: Our City (9,600 participants, 9,400 proposals), Our Routes (8,100 participants, 2,600 proposals), My IGSC (6,700 participants, 1,500 proposals), Moscow Standard for Children’s Recreation (7,200 participants, 5,400 proposals) and My Outpatient Clinic (58,800 participants, 27,800 opinions).