Posted 20 января 2022,, 08:02

Published 20 января 2022,, 08:02

Modified 24 декабря 2022,, 22:37

Updated 24 декабря 2022,, 22:37

Amendments to the Land Code: the construction lobby destroys the buffer zones of the cities

Amendments to the Land Code: the construction lobby destroys the buffer zones of the cities

20 января 2022, 08:02
Today is the deadline for submitting amendments to the draft law amending Article 27 of the Land Code. If it is adopted, then state lands of the second belt of zones of sanitary protection of water supply sources will fall under privatization.

The authorities will lose control over them, and the quality of water in cities will deteriorate sharply, environmentalists believe.

Yelena Ivanova, Natalia Seibil

In the language of legal documents, the changes proposed to the Land Code and considered by the Duma at the end of December in the first reading sound innocent: in subparagraph 14 of paragraph 5 of Article 27 of the Land Code, it is proposed to exclude land plots that are state and municipal property and located in the second zone of sanitary zones. protection of water supply sources, from the list of land plots limited in circulation.

Translated from official into Russian, this means that now the coastal zones of reservoirs and floodplains, from where they take water for cities, will be privatized and built up without any doubt.

The ecological state of the catchment areas of drinking water sources in Russia is deteriorating all the time, says ecologist, corresponding member of the Russian Academy of Sciences Viktor Danilov-Danilyan. No blissful picture in government reports on the state of the environment can hide the fact that the quality of water in water sources is declining. One of the reasons is the development of floodplains of rivers and reservoirs. The floodplains are the very “second belt of sanitary protection zones” from the draft law. The first belt adjoins water intakes, and the territory of floodplains is the main territory on which the quality of drinking water in our cities depends. Viktor Danilov-Danilyan describes the significance of these lands as follows:

- The ecological role they play is a barrier to the penetration of pollution into a water body, river or reservoir. If we build up the second belt of the sanitary protection zone, this means that we are destroying this barrier, and instead of a barrier, we are creating an additional source of pollution. Not only do we lose the ability to use this barrier to clean up pollution that occurs outside this area, but we also inevitably direct additional dirt from this new source into the same water bodies.

Until today, all the lands of the second belt could only be leased. A lease is a contract that specifies the terms of use of what is being rented. Yes, tenants can build houses on these lands and live in them. But if the conditions of the lease are not met, then the lease can be terminated. Neither the state nor local authorities can do anything with the owner. When buying, he does not assume any obligations, and it is almost impossible to take away the land.

- If we allow the sale of land that is now rented in the second belt of sanitary protection zones, - says Victor Danilov-Danilyan, - this means that we will legitimize all violations of the law that have been made in these territories for the last thirty years, and finally lose them control. All arguments that the owner is a responsible person are good for other conditions, not Russian ones. For such conditions, where compliance with the law is considered the norm, and in our country the violation of the law is considered the norm.

Environmental law lawyer Aleksey Dmitriyev is sure that the authorities are carrying out systematic activities to remove restrictions from the sanitary protection belts. The draft law did not appear by chance and not out of hand. On the eve of the submission of the bill to the Duma, as if by magic, from the cadastral map of the Moscow Region, many land plots of the second zone of the ZSO evaporated a record about their status - “Property of public legal entities”. With a stroke of the pen, or, more correctly, with the movement of an eraser, state-owned lands suddenly became "no one's".

In 2019, the authorities of Moscow and the Moscow region canceled the regulatory acts of the government of the RSFSR of 1940-1974. As a result, almost 90% of the lands of Moscow and the Moscow region were left without protection, although, according to federal sanitary rules, they were supposed to have Sanitary Protection Zones for water supply sources. Alexey Dmitriev sued the authorities of the Moscow region on this issue:

- Our Interregional public charitable organization "Society for the Protection of Consumer Rights and Environmental Protection" Principle" disputed in court the activities of Moscow Mayor Sobyanin and Governor of the Moscow Region Vorobyov, who abolished Soviet acts on the protection of water supply sources. Representatives of the authorities spoke fairly honestly: we have a huge the number of property owners who have built houses or bought land on the banks, they want to keep it, so that no one takes it away from them, so that they pay land tax.

Stripes along the banks of reservoirs in the capital and the region are the most tasty morsel from the point of view of developers and from the point of view of Russian elites who build estates on the banks of rivers. The value of this property is skyrocketing. That is why they want to build apartment buildings and estates. The only thing that limited them was the ban on privatization. Ecologist Danilov-Danilyan knows exactly who needs this law:

- Construction lobby. There is no doubt about this. People who want to build in these territories and receive income from the constructed structures. Either selling them or renting them out.

By themselves, the sanitary protection zones are a very small piece around large cities, but if they are built up to their fullest, a lot can be spoiled. As Aleksey Dmitriev aptly put it, the Vorobyovs and Sobyanins, as well as their entourage, want the inhabitants of the cities to drink and wash with diluted urine, water, which is essentially sewage. Victor Danilov-Danilyan agrees with him, a lot of things harmful to humans will get into the water:

- Everything that appears in the water as diffuse pollution from the territories of settlements: oil products, detergents, all kinds of dirt coming from the degradation of asphalt surfaces, car tires, mineral fertilizers that flow from the so-called lawns, chemicals that pour in winter ( reagents)…

Where there are tidbits of property, there is always the smell of money. The authors of the bill, as an argument in favor of the new order, write that the new rules will annually bring 4.5 billion rubles to the treasury. The figure, of course, is considerable, but what exactly it consists of, they are silent.

Critics, on the other hand, are very specific. They draw attention to the fact that the amendment to Article 27 of the Land Code fully complies with the criteria for determining the price of a land plot when concluding a sale and purchase agreement without bidding, which were approved by the Government of the Russian Federation in its Decree No. 279 dated March 26, 2015.

So, the price of a land plot with the restrictions removed, on which buildings were built and registered in ownership until July 1, 2012, is 2.5% of the cadastral property. In other cases, the owners of buildings and structures will have to pay 60% of the cadastral value. No one will doubt who built houses and estates on the banks of the Moscow and St. Petersburg rivers, reservoirs and bays. So, those who are not deprived of fate will again receive a gift. No other word, like royal, can be called the language.

"I have no doubts that the new bill was initiated at the initiative of Moscow and the Moscow region in the interests of those entities that want to legalize their property in our region. It is here that a huge number of conflicts and high-profile scandals related to the development of the coast are now taking place. Naturally, the situation around large cities is exactly the same", - says lawyer Alexei Dmitriyev.

Those who have been to cottage villages near Moscow perfectly understand both the height and the length of the fences that protect from prying eyes those who want to enjoy the sweets of life in silence and solitude, including admiring nature. For everyone else, after privatization, access to water bodies will be closed forever. The development will lead to the blocking of approaches to water bodies, because if they build and dig there, they usually enclose everything with fences, says environmentalist Mikhail Kreindlin:

- The ban on blocking is very often not observed, and then the authorities will be very poorly controlled. This will affect the right of citizens to the public use of water bodies and recreational resources, especially in the Moscow region, because there are not many natural objects left there. And if they are built up and partitioned off, there will be no opportunity to rest.

Ecologists have no hope that the authorities will build more powerful treatment facilities. Yes, there are modern sewage treatment plants, but who will pay for the fact that the Russian elite will receive not only houses, but also land, and developers will become even richer, Academician Danilov-Danilyan asks. And the answer is: taxpayers. That is, the citizens of the country, who do not feel sorry for anything for their native elite. And modern sewage treatment plants have not been able to cope with the existing load for a long time.

Alexey Dmitriyev finds out in the courts how the owners relate to their environmental responsibilities:

- Now we have a trial against Sheremetyevo Airport. As it turned out, since 1979 it has not upgraded its effluents, while continuing to discharge its untreated effluents, from which there is an excess of ethylene glycol and other pollutants by 2000 times. All this goes to a tributary of the Klyazma River, which is a source of drinking water supply.

In Russian society, in all its strata, when you need to make a choice in favor of ecology or money, the ruble always wins.

The Land Code is already more like a fig sheet that covers up environmental crimes that are happening in the expanses of the motherland. To remove the last deterrent, this bill has now been introduced to remove restrictions on the privatization of land. In muddy water, felling is better caught.