In 1998 as in previous years, the enterprises of mining, chemical and metallurgical, machine building, fuel and energy, construction and agriculture complexes, etc. were the main sources of waste generation in Ukraine.
Taking into consideration the fact that metallurgical and petrochemical complexes produce 70% of GDP of Ukraine, it is possible to consider these complexes to be the main contributors in terms of generation of waste. The most important part of the waste materials originates from ore mining and processing. In particular ashes and ash slag wastes of thermo-electric power stations, local boiler houses, coal mining and coal providing wastes, polymetallic ore processing wastes, metallurgical enterprises slags and red slimes belong to the type of large-tonnage wastes.
Due to the general economic tendency towards a decrease of production volumes, less money is available for environment-protecting measures, which causes a reduced level of waste materials usage.
The accumulation of ashes and ash slag wastes has been continuing, its main sources being thermo-electric power stations. The usage level of these waste materials is still low: in 1998, 16% of wastes were used compared to 16.4% in 1997. In 1998, 7.1 million tons of waste materials were destroyed or carried to dump sites in comparison with 0.6 million tons in 1997. As of 1 January 1999, ash dumps of Ukrainian power stations contained 358.8 million tons of these resources, which exceeds the maximum accumulated volume reached in 1997 by 0.6 million tons.
In 1998, 31.1 million tons of waste materials were generated in mines and processing factories in comparison with 31.9 million tons in 1997 and 40.3 million tons in 1996, though the level of usage was 9.0% compared to 9.3% in 1997 and 9.7% in 1996. The volume of accumulated waste materials of coal mining and coal concentrating was 140 million tons in 1998, which is 2.3 million tons more than in 1997.
Dnipropetrovsk Region is the source of polymetallic ore concentrating waste materials. In 1998, 5.5 million tons of these wastes were generated compared to 4.4 million tons in 1997. The level of usage (2.4%) was almost two times lower than in 1997 (4.7%). The volume of accumulated waste materials has been constantly increasing, and in 1998 it was 119.8 million tons in comparison with 114.4 million tons in 1997 and 110.2 million tons in 1996.
In 1998 metallurgical industry enterprises generated 22.9 million tons of blast furnace slags, steel furnace slags and ferroalloy slags, compared to 15 million tons in 1997. At the same time the level of usage was reduced from 54.5% in 1997 to 36.4% in 1998, and the volume of accumulated waste materials increased by 8 million tons and reached more than 100 million tons.
Considerable areas are used for disposal of red slimes, which are mainly generated in Mykolayiv Region. A low level of usage caused the volume of accumulated waste materials to increase to 17.3 million tons in 1998 as compared to 16.4 million tons in 1997.
Thus usage of the most important types of recyclable wastes was decreased in 1998 in comparison with 1997: ashes and ash slags from 16.4% to 16%, coal mining and coal providing wastes from 9.3% to 9%, polymetallic ore providing from 4.7% to 2.4%, steel furnace slags from 57.1% (total volume from 21 million tons) to 15.1% (to 17.6 million tons). The accumulated volumes of certain waste materials decreased, except volumes of steel furnace slags, which was increased from 3.7 to 11.7 million tons.
Environmental problems due to waste materials accumulation are getting acute in Ukraine. The most dangerous wastes are heavy metals, oil products and unusable chemical herbicides. In 1998 such danger levels of toxic wastes where graded: 19,000 tons come under the first danger level, 183,000 tons under the second danger level, 2,252,000 tons under the third danger level, and 81,579,000 under the fourth danger level. The total amount was 84,033,000 tons. The utilization level was 33.3%, 38.5%, 63.1%, 21.9% and 23.1%, respectively.
Toxic wastes of the fourth danger level were mainly generated in Donetsk and Dnipropetrovsk regions in 1998 as in previous years, and amounted to 84.7% of the total amount of these waste materials in Ukraine.
Toxic wastes of the first danger level were mostly generated in Dnipropetrovsk and Chernigiv and constituted 82.8% of the total volume of such wastes accumulated in Ukraine.
Most toxic wastes of the second danger level were generated in Dnipropetrovsk and Donetsk regions and in the Crimea, which amounted to 63.2% of the total amount of such wastes accumulated in Ukraine.
Toxic wastes of the third danger level were mainly generated in Mykolaiv, Dnipropetrovsk and Zaporizhzhia regions and constituted 83.7% of the total amount of such wastes accumulated in Ukraine.
The largest part of toxic wastes of the fourth danger level was generated in Donetsk and Dnipropetrovsk regions in 1998 as in previous years, and made up 86.2% of the total accumulated volumes of these waste materials in Ukraine.
In towns and villages, 40 million m3 of waste (about 0.8 m3 for each citizen) are generated. This garbage is disposed of in 700 urban landfills, about 80% of which are used without a programme in place to prevent ground water and air pollution. In four waste disposal plants the equipment does not meet modern ecological requirements. The largest landfills are situated in Dnipropetrovsk (140 hectares), Donetsk (330 hectares), Odesa (195 hectares) and Zaporizhzhia (153 hectares).
The share of the volume of accumulated domestic wastes is less than 3% of the total amount of wastes. In the world’s leading countries this balance is 19% in Japan and 26% in Germany. The reason is improper usage of raw materials in the country.
Paper, scrap metal, etc. are used as recyclable wastes. It provides an opportunity for income for some towns and villages but it obviously cannot reduce the wastes which are supposed to be burnt or taken to dump sites. Above-mentioned amounts are based on expert estimates.
Total data concerning generation, accumulation, utilization and disposal volumes of waste materials in Ukraine and their regional structure are shown in ( Table 3.34, Table 3.35, Table 3.36, Table 3.37).