• Yugoslavia

    The Slovenian Greens The environment and movement played a more ambiguous role in Yugoslavia. One of the major successes of the late 1980s was a nationwide effort primarily led by scientists to re-sign the federal government decision to build a hydroelectric plant at the Tara River Canyon, one of the wildest and most scenic canyons…

  • Poland

    Krakow, the first protest Environmental protest started in Poland in 1980 when environment activists succeeded in getting the big aluminum mill outside of Krakow closed down. From Poland, environmental protest spread throughout the region. Revelations of ecological crisis or of some gigantic government projects – harmful to the environment – precipitated public responds and calls…

  • Germany (Democratic Republic of)

    Candles in Leipzig In East Germany, the Evangelical Church became the protector of small disparate environmental groups such as the green network Ark. The 1989 pursuit of emigration by East German youth through Hungary dominated the international media. Nevertheless, as young East Germans were climbing over embassy walls in Budapest, others were gathering in huge…

  • Czechoslovakia

    A Black Triangle In Czechoslovakia air and water pollution was the catalyst of protest. In February 1987 some 300 people from the Chomutov district of North Bohemian region  signed the letter sent first the chairman of the district National Council and then the check prime minister and Presidium of the communist party complaining about an…

  • Hungary

    Danube’s Bend In Hungary, the environmental issue that mobilized the country against the communist regime was the controversy generated by the government’s insistence on co-operating with its Slovak partners into a gigantic hydroelectric power project that called for the construction of a dam at Nagymaros, situated on the beautiful Danube Bend where the river turns…

  • Estonia (Soviet Socialist Republic)

    Phosphorite War In Estonia opposition to state of plans for phosphate mining was motivated by a genuine fear of further wastelands like the oil shale mining area of Northeast Estonia, but also because the plan involved bringing in thousands of Russian workers.  There was opposition to similar industrial development in Latvia and Lithuania and in…

  • Latvia (Soviet Socialist Republic)

    Daugava Latvians primarily protested against the construction of the hydropower dam on the river Daugava. The affirmation of the glasnost and Gorbachev’s desire to see more active civil society gave an impetus to the younger population. In February 1987 large actions of environmental protection take place in Riga. Finally, the Soviet Council of ministers decides…

  • Lithuania (Soviet Socialist Republic)

    Atgaja In Lithuania, plans by Moscow to expand the republics ecologically dangerous chemicals industry was one factor leading to the formation of Sajudis in June 1988. The core of ecological protest however involved in the building over fourth reactor at the Eden Arena nuclear power plant already the biggest in the Westin Soviet Union opposition…

  • Romania

    Systematization of villages Romanian tragicomedy ended in December 1989 in a bloodbath. Despite the atrocious degradation of the environment, the country did not experience any environmental movement of dissent. A thin exception lies in the International protests against what was called ‘systematization of the villages’, an attempt of the communist government to forcibly urbanize Romanian…

  • Bulgarian flag

    Bulgaria

    Ekoglasonost In Bulgaria, 1988 was a key year for the ecological movement. Air pollution in the town of Ruse on the Danube river had reached such proportions that it threatened health and life of resident population. The sources of the pollution were huge chemical plants on the Romanian bank of the river. Public protest forced…

  • Albanian flag

    Albania

    Today’s carbon portrait of Albania Albania is located in Southeastern Europe, bordering the Adriatic Sea and Ionian Sea, between Greece in the south and Montenegro and Kosovo in the north. This nation’s terrain is comprised of mostly mountains and hills with small plains along the coast. The natural hazards in this region are destructive earthquakes,…

  • Moldova (Soviet Socialist Republic)

    Today’s carbon portrait of Moldova Moldova is located in Eastern Europe, northeast of Romania. This nation’s terrain consists of a rolling steppe and gradual slope south to the Black Sea. The only natural hazards in this region are landslides. The climate is moderate in the winters and warm in the summers. The environmental issues in…