TNMU Hosted All-Ukrainian Scientific-Applied Conference “Environment and Health”
On April 21-23, 2022, the XXII All-Ukrainian Scientific and Applied Conference with International Participation “Environment and Health” was hosted in I. Horbachevsky Ternopil National Medical University. The event was organized jointly by the Department of Physiology, Bioethics and Biosafety, the Department of General Hygiene and Ecology and the Department of Microbiology, Virology and Immunology of TNMU.
The event was attended by leading experts, scientists, public figures, local government officials.
The opening of the symposium began with an introductory speech by the Vice-Rector for Research, Professor Ivan Klishch. He conveyed words of congratulations on behalf of the Rector of TNMU, Professor Mykhaylo Korda, wished success and effective work to the scientific meeting.
“We had never thought that our scientific forums would take place at such a tragic time, during the war, so we must hold our events with a slightly changed agenda and reports. Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine on February 24 has already caused and continues causing enormous damage to the people and infrastructure of the settlements where hostilities continue. At present, it is not even possible to fully assess the impact of the war on the environment due to a lack of accurate information. We understand that the longer the war lasts, the more damage it will do to the environment, and the more consequences we will face in the future. That is why it is important now to record crimes against the environment in order to be able to judge Russia for them as well. I truly believe that the next conference will take place at a completely different time, in an independent, free Ukraine, which will definitely win,” Professor Ivan Klishch said.
The participants of the Conference were greeted by Ihor Pyatkivskyy, Deputy Head of the Department of Ecology and Natural Resources, Head of the Department of Environmental Protection and Natural Resources of the Ternopil Regional Military Administration.
“Since the beginning of Russia’s armed aggression against Ukraine, its civilians and nature, we have witnessed a number of negative phenomena that affect drinking water, soil, air and the environment in general. This is due to the rocket strikes that are going on all over the country. Our region has also experienced certain problems when the Kremenets District, as a result of the rocket strike, contaminated the Dniester River with mineral fertilizers. At this time, the water already meets the standards and is suitable for use. Thus, the topic of our today’s conference is extremely relevant and important,” said Ihor Pyatkivskyy.
Opening the plenary session, Professor Stepan Vadzyuk, Head of the Department of Physiology, Bioethics and Biosafety, Honoured Worker of Science and Technology of Ukraine, Doctor of Medicine, congratulated the participants of the scientific forum and placed emphasis on the threats to public health caused by Russia’s military aggression.
“Dear participants of the conference, our meeting today was to be dedicated to the 25th anniversary of the All-Ukrainian Ecological League, which initiated such scientific events in order to unite the public, scientists and government officials to solve environmental problems. The All-Ukrainian Ecological League is a non-governmental organization founded in 1997. Its main goal is to improve the ecological situation in Ukraine, to form a new environmental worldview, and to ensure the ecological rights of citizens. Unfortunately, our state has been at war for two months now, so we are forced to live and work in a new reality, and I believe in our victory and the reconstruction of the country,” Professor Stepan Vadzyuk said to the audience.
Deputy Director for Research and Practice of O. M. Marzeyev Institute for Public Health of the National Academy of Medical Sciences of Ukraine, Doctor of Medical Sciences, Professor Olena Turos greeted the participants of the Conference and presented a report on “Air Hygiene Challenges”.
Professor Olena Turos noted that the full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine has already caused and continues causing devastating damage to ecosystems, and accidents at enterprises due to rocket fire pose risks to public health. It was also noted that even after the end of the war, man-made and ecological catastrophes created by the Russian occupiers will have consequences for the environment for years. The maximum permissible concentration of hazardous gases and substances in the air exceeds the norms by tens and sometimes hundreds of times in places of active hostilities, which can lead to diseases of the respiratory, cardiovascular and nervous systems.
Ostap Zhukorskyi, Academician-Secretary of the Department of Zootechnics of the Bureau of NAAS Presidium, Doctor of Agricultural Sciences, Professor, Academician of NAAS, Honoured Worker of Science and Technology, spoke about ensuring adequate nutrition of the population of Ukraine in modern conditions.
Professor Ostap Zhukorskyi revealed the issue of food products danger, and how Russia’s war against Ukraine threatens not only us but also other countries. About 30% of the sown areas planned for spring crops will definitely not be sown, another 20% are still in question. In particular, the difficult situation in animal husbandry. Some regions have been affected by power outages, which is a disaster for businesses such as poultry farms. In particular, millions of chickens died in the Kherson region due to shelling, lack of electricity supply and inability to deliver fodder. Cattle owners also suffered significantly.
The head of the All-Ukrainian Ecological League Tetiana Tymochko greeted the Conference participants and spoke about the main environmental threats and risks to the environment, life and health from Russian military aggression. Tetiana Tymochko thanked Professor Stepan Vadzyuk for organizing the scientific event at such a difficult time and wished everyone effective work and victory for Ukraine.
The Director of TNMU Academic and Research Institute of Pathological Processes Simulation and Analysis, Associate Professor Viktor Lototskyi informed the participants about the possible ways of radiation protection of civilians in modern conditions and the main threats of Russia’s use of biological and chemical weapons.
Taras Pyatkovskyy, Associate Professor of the Department of Microbiology, Virology and Immunology of I. Horbachevsky Ternopil National Medical University interested the audience with his report on the topic “Biological weapons. Biological terrorism”.
Liubomyr Tsaryk, Professor, Head of the Department of Geoecology and Methods of Teaching Environmental Sciences at Ternopil Volodymyr Hnatiuk National Pedagogical University, presented the report on “War and Environment”.
Of specific interest was the speech of Petro Tabas, a post-graduate student of TNMU Department of Physiology, Bioethics and Biosafety on the topic “Chemical weapons of Russia”.
Tetiana Kharkivska, a post-graduate student of TNMU Department of Physiology, Bioethics and Biosafety, spoke about the causes, course and consequences of post-traumatic stress disorder during the war.
The participants of the event thanked the hosts of the Conference for the constructive dialogue, because the exchange of experience and lively communication is the key to a reliable, successful partnership and wished everyone a peaceful sky.
The Organizing Committee expresses sincere appreciation to the University administration, speakers and listeners, as well as all those involved in studying the consequences of military aggression on the environment for participating in the preparation and holding of the online conference. The event ended with the adoption of important decisions reflected in the resolution.
TNMU Journalist Solomiia Hnatyshyn.
Photographs by Solomiia Hnatyshyn.