19th Annual Smithsonian Magazine Photo Contest Natural World
Uranium pool

Uranium tailing pond, partially backfilled with waste from fertilizer production. History of Lermontov begins with the atomic project set up by USSR and search of the material substrates for further establishment of the nuclear Industry. In the 70s mining of the uranium ore was stopped, and the plans for future reorientation of the city into a resort town were not implemented. A long history of uranium mining left an impressive footprint on its residents. The housing stock was built with the usage of «dirty» materials, taken from the dumps of ore mines and besides, the city has an abnormal number of cases of oncological diseases. Life in a town, the main purpose of which was uranium mining, seemed safe and had its advantages - supplies from the capital, high wages, better schools, and immediate proximity to the natural healing sources. The consequences of living next door to a «peaceful atom» were poorly examined and for the most part only began to be felt in the 21st century.

Photo Detail
Date Taken: 04.2021
Date Uploaded: 11.2021
Photo Location: Lermontov, Russia
Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark III
Copyright: © Raul Akhmedov