On our way back to Saint Petersburg we had two nights in the Norilsk-Dudinka area again. This time we stayed at the small hotel by the airport, but on our full day there we took a taxi to Norilsk to see it. It was 9 May, a major holiday in Russia celebrating victory in World War II (the Germans surrenderd on 8 May 1945 in Berlin, but it was already 9 May in Moscow). This was the main street in Norilsk, which was closed to traffic for the celebration. Despite the lack of people in this photo, there actually were a lot of people out walking around. The sign on the left says "victory" under 1945. It was cloudy and snowing in Norilsk, but clear at the airport; the snow and clouds in Norilsk were caused by the pollution from the metal smelters in the city. Norilsk has only 133,000 people (it's the northernmost city in the world with over 100,000), but it's one of the 10 most polluted cities in the world. They recently started mining the sediment that has been falling out of the polluted air for decades to recover the metal dust that escaped from the smelters' stacks.

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Page created 16 August 2007, Last modified 16 August 2007 22:55 Pacific Daylight Time