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Department of Environmental Protection and Natural Resources

The Department of Environmental Protection and Natural Resources was established in 1972 as an independent research unit. It conducts a wide range of research and application works covering the shaping and protection of the environment, including studies on the impact of anthropogenic factors on the geological environment. Research works are focused on the geological foundations of ecosystem functioning, anthropogenic transformations of the environment, renaturalization of degraded areas, and the importance of protected areas for the preservation of geo- and biodiversity.
Detailed research topics:

  • assessment of the sensitivity of the geological environment to the impact of anthropogenic factors;
  • assessment of soil properties as geological insulating barriers and their role in groundwater protection against contamination;
  • anthropogenic transformations of groundwater status;
  • impact of anomalous climatic phenomena on the supply, circulation and drainage of groundwater, with particular emphasis on karst areas;
  • geological and geomorphological conditions of ecosystem functioning;
  • assessment of biogeochemical properties of lake sediments as a indicators of historical changes of environmental condition causing by natural and anthropogenic factors. – environmental impact assessment of investment projects;
  • monitoring of environmental geocomponents against the impact of anthropogenic factors;
  • environmental geoengineering – research on the properties of anthropogenic soils, waste storage and management;
  • land degradation and directions of their reclamation and development;
  • impact of landfills on the environment;
  • development of post-mining and post-industrial areas;
  • geological problems of protection and reconstruction of historic buildings;
  • importance of river valley morphogenesis in the distribution of heavy metal pollutants in sediments;
  • processes of soil formation in areas exposed by retreating glaciers (Antarctica).