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01 Okt. 2023

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War in Ukraine: how does nature help the UAF defeat russian invaders?

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War in Ukraine: how does nature help the UAF defeat russian invaders?

Ukrainian nature and geography have repeatedly helped the Ukrainian Armed Forces gain an advantage on the battlefield. Find out more about how fields, swamps, forests, mountains and rivers are fighting together with the army against the russians

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Ukrainian nature is rich in forests, rivers, steppes, marshes, and mountains. And it is these natural and geographical features that have repeatedly hindered the occupiers and helped the Armed Forces to win victories.


The role of Ukraine's nature in this war is described in the article below, with reference to the Top Lead study on the environmental impact of the russian-Ukrainian war.


Ukrainian geography against the russians


There is a huge amount of agricultural land in Ukraine that cannot be used to hide army equipment and weapons, as the fields are clearly visible to scouts and are shelled by artillery. Even Ukrainian soldiers have repeatedly called the russian invasion a "war for landing" because no one will attack through an open field.



Photo: screenshot from Top Lead research


The second factor that has repeatedly stopped the russian advance is swamps, as marshy terrain makes it difficult not only for manpower but also for equipment.



Photo: screenshot from Top Lead research


Ukrainian forests also did not allow the occupiers to advance on a wide front, as the dense plantations make it very difficult to fight with equipment, and so they were forced to advance only with infantry. Forests in the northern part of Ukraine played a particularly important role when the russians tried to invade Kyiv, Chernihiv, and Sumy regions.



Photo: screenshot from Top Lead research


The vast river network has also repeatedly hindered the russians, as it takes time and money to build a pontoon crossing, but these intentions have not always been successful. For example, in 2022 alone, russia lost about 100 pieces of equipment while forcing the Siverskyi Donets River.



Photo: screenshot from Top Lead research


The exclusion zone played a separate significant role in this war, as at the beginning of the russian invasion in 2022, the occupiers seized the Chornobyl nuclear power plant. In order to maintain their positions, the russians began digging trenches and trenches in the radioactively contaminated area, which eventually led to a massive case of radiation sickness.



Photo: screenshot from Top Lead research




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The impact of the war on the environment in Ukraine: the damage caused


Unfortunately, the russian invasion has led to a large number of negative consequences for the environment. For example, according to the study, as of June 2023, russia has already caused approximately $56.4 billion in damage. Of these:


- $29.2 billion in air damage;

- 25.6 billion dollars - to Ukrainian lands;

- USD 1.6 billion - water resources.


In addition, destroyed russian equipment also has a significant impact, as this waste not only pollutes the land but also causes emissions of harmful substances into the atmosphere.


The fighting also causes a huge number of fires, both in open areas and in large cities and villages. And the fire destroys not only infrastructure, houses and green spaces, but also agricultural land and crops. 


It is also important to note that russia has seized and destroyed at least 25 protected areas (national parks and nature reserves), which were home to a large number of animals, including endangered species, and plants listed in the Red Book.


russia is a terrorist country that sees no value in the lives of people and animals. Numerous terrorist attacks on the territory of Ukraine and constant violations of international laws and norms are proof of this. The entire world is witnessing russia's brutal aggression, which knows neither boundaries nor principles. Today, Ukraine is defending not only its sovereignty and independence, but also global security.


Therefore, supporting the country in this terrible war is a step towards the victory of goodness, justice and international security. And you can make this contribution together with Visit Ukraine thanks to a new unique project - donation tours to Ukraine. Read more about what donation tours are and how to become part of this project here.




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