Karakan Ridge, adjacent to the open-pit coal mines, presents a convenient model for approbation of environmental monitoring methods. Since 2012 on an annual basis PJSC KTK has been making observations in cooperation with the Branch of Kuzbass Botanical Garden, Federal Research Centre Institute of Coal Chemistry and Science of Chemical Materials, Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences (Institute of Human Ecology).
|1.||Study has been conducted in respect of the temperature regime on the slopes of different exposition.|
|2.||Study has been conducted in respect of the snow regime of the territory, the depth of the snow cover and the moisture content.|
|3.||An assessment has been made in respect of pollution of the mining area with the dust particles in seven classes of sizes.|
|4.||Study has been conducted in respect of the condition of the vegetation cover, structural and functional indicators of the plant community, condition of the population of rare species of plants, number and structure of the population of invertebrate animals found on the Karakan Ridge at the initial stage of coal mining at the Vinogradovsky Open-pit Mine, PJSC KTK.|
|5.||Based on the continuous observations of the biological objects during three years it was concluded that the main reason of the recorded changes by years are climatic events which change the vegetation cover of the Karakan Ridge much harder than coal mining.|
|6.||It should be conceived that the ecosystems may degrade due to the manifold increase of the local pollution (quickly) or upon manifestation of the common cumulative effect as far as specific critical level of concentration of pollutants in soil and water is reached (slowly).|
Technological impact on the ecosystems of the Ridge is expected to increase in the future, which must affect the parameters of the ecosystems under study.
The level of direct impact of mining operations on the condition of natural ecosystems will be assessed and the measures will be developed to reduce technological impact.
Scientists study and analyze photosynthetic gas exchange of the plants using portable gas measuring system GFS-3000 (Walz, Germany). Following the research the scientists receive chlorophyll concentration ratio and photosynthetic activity of the plants being in close proximity of the sources of dusting (haul roads, coal depots and dumps).
Analysis of the research results shows distinct decrease in the chlorophyll content in the leaves of the plants under study in the Karakan Natural Reserve compared with the site located near the sources of coal dusting. Therefore the plants may act as a biological indicator of the environmental health.
Within the framework of the research the scientists have developed the recommendations relating to the optimal adjustment of production activities which ensure the permissible level of impact on the environment. This technique was accepted as a corporate standard for carrying out of production environmental control at Vinogradovsky Open-pit Mine.