Friday, June 9, 2023

Moscow Admits Occupied Crimea Among Nine Russian Regions Suffering Serious Water Shortages

Paul Goble

            Staunton, June 7 – The Russian bombing of the Kakhovka dam and its impact on both shipping on the Dnipr and water issues in eastern Ukraine has called attention to a much larger issue few in the West have focused on – increasing water shortages across the Russian Federation that Moscow has been struggling with.

            Russian Deputy Prime Viktoriya Abramchenko told the Federation Council this week that in nine Russian regions, water shortages have become critical. In addition to occupied Crimea and Sevastopol, these include the Kalmyk republic, Kursk, Saratov, Orenburg, and Astrakhan oblasts and Stavropol kray (

            She placed the blame for this less on climate change than on misuse of water by businesses, agriculture and the population. According to Abramchenko, Russia consumes 55 cubic kilometers of water a year but wastes 12 percent of that because of aging irrigation systems and water distribution networks.

            In some of these regions, the water shortages are now so severe that the economy is contracting because of them and people are leaving to go to parts of the country where there is still sufficient water for life and economic activity. 


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