Losses from Far East fires run into millions of roubles

Damage from forest fires is difficult to calculate now, but it is clear that it is reaching into millions of roubles, said Vladimir Kolomentsov, acting head of natural resources in the Far Eastern region. Also added to the burnt woods must be costs of equipment, price of fuel, almost complete stoppage of tree-planting work, etc. Economists have calculated that more than a million cubic metres of timber burnt last year, with losses amounting to more than 381 million roubles (one dollar is equal to more than 30 roubles). Fines levied on those guilty of starting fires totaled a mere 588,000 roubles. The fire situation in the forests today is more alarming than last year. And loss figures are certain to top the previous year's. Since the beginning of the fire-hazard season, that is, after the snow has melted away, blazes in Khabarovsk Territory have raged over almost 71,000 hectares.

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