Middlebury

February 21, 2002

Contact:
Sarah Ray

802-443-5794

sray@middlebury.edu

Posted: February 21, 2002

MIDDLEBURY,
VT
-
On
Wednesday, March 6, Professor Aleg Cherp of the Central
European University in Budapest will discuss his experience
as the environmental expert on the United Nations mission
that produced a recent report titled "Human consequences of
the Chernobyl Nuclear Accident." His talk, "Fifteen Years
After Chernobyl—How the World Has Responded," will take
place at 7 p.m. at Middlebury College. Cherp’s
presentation will offer the public the first opportunity to
discuss the report with one of its authors since the United
Nations officially released it on Feb. 6.

Cherp will
give a second presentation, "A History of the Environmental
Movement in Soviet and Post-Soviet Russia," reflecting on
his broader experience in that region on Thursday, March 7,
at 4:30 p.m.

Both
lectures will take place in the conference room of the
Robert A. Jones House on Hillcrest Road off College Street
(Route 125) and are free and open to the public.

The 1986
Chernobyl nuclear power plant accident was a defining event
of the late 20th century for many in the Soviet world. It
has become a focal point in the continuing debate about
nuclear energy around the globe. Yet, 15 years after the
reactor meltdown in a Ukrainian nuclear power plant, the
history of the Chernobyl accident is still being debated and
the future of those affected by the accident remains an open
question.

Cherp,
representing the environmental perspective, and his
colleagues representing the medical and economic
perspectives, have contributed a new framework for looking
at Chernobyl’s past and for mapping the future of
millions of affected people and hundreds of communities in
Belarus, Russia and Ukraine. Their report examines the
interaction of environmental, health and economic impacts of
the 1986 accident, as well as recovery and mitigation
strategies that have been employed. Cherp and the other U.N.
commissioned experts have taken an objective look at an
historical event that continues to be the center of
international scientific and policy
controversies.

Cherp has a
long and varied career of involvement with environmental
problems associated with the Soviet and post-Soviet world.
As a university student during the Gorbachev era, he
co-chaired a network of student environmental protection
organizations. He has studied environmental policy-making
and environmental impact assessment in many Eastern European
countries as well as in Russia and Central Asia.

In addition
to being a co-author of the U.N. report, Cherp is a native
of Belarus, the country whose population was most severely
impacted by the 1986 nuclear accident.

A reading
copy of the U.N. Chernobyl report is available at the
offices of ECOLOGIA, a Middlebury-based organization that
promotes public participation in environmental decision
making globally.

Both events
are co-sponsored by ECOLOGIA and by several Middlebury
College organizations—the Center for International
Affairs, the C.A. Johnson Economics Chair, and the
department of environmental studies.

For more
information, contact Charlotte Tate, assistant director of
the Middlebury College Center for International Affairs, at
tate@middlebury.edu
or 802-443-5795.