Systematization of urban areas conditions criteria



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Murzin A.D. (Southern federal university)


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Article is devoted to a problem of systematization formal criteria ordering complex social-economic-ecological environment condition of the urbanized territories.

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Key words: indicators, condition, urban area


The identification of specific indicators of sustainable local areas development in the region, at first glance, seems to be a minor problem. It is quite clear that each region has its own, the more acute problems specific to this area and caused by a number of historical, resource, geographic and etc. preconditions.

However, speaking about the specific terms of sustainable development, it should be noted that their determination should be not an accidental, but grounded, and issues, monitoring by this indicators must accord to the general principles and criteria of sustainable development concept [2].

Thus, the following principles for building a system of specific indicators of sustainable development can be marked:

-     complexity, i.e. ability to reflect environmental, social and economic development aspects;

-     coherence, i.e. accounting of sustainable development trends of region in dynamics and comparing with the russian average values;

-     hierarchy, i.e. the need of step by step indicators selection for inclusion in the group of specific, which includes the selection of indicators with negative dynamics in the first stage, as well as the selection of indicators with values worse than the russian averages in the second stage, and bolting out the unnecessary or extension of figures in the third stage by analyzing causes and preconditions of shaping problem with the applying of expert methods;

-     accessibility, i.e. monitoring by the system of Russian statistics.

To determine the most acute issues of sustainable urban areas development in the region, it is proposed to use the model of pressure-state-reaction indicators system [1]. An important feature and advantage of this model is the logical interconnection between the indicators of pressure, reflecting the level of negative human impact, indicators of state, reflecting the currently existing quality of the environment components and the reaction indicators that characterize the public response to the current pressure level.

This model allows to identify cause-effect interconnections between economic, environmental and social conditions that provides the basis for decisionmaking in the sphere of environmentaleconomic policy, and also allows the public to trace interconnection of such phenomena and to develop the arising issues solving policy. The following specific set of indicators to assess the sustainable development of socio-ecological-economic system can be offered (Table 1).

The system of indicators contains a rather well-known indicators, most of which are included in range of indicators calculated by the Federal State Statistics Service and its regional departments:

1.     Pressure Indicators

1.1. Emissions of air pollutants from stationary sources and vehicles

1.2. Proportion of trapped and neutralized pollutants in the total emission volume

1.3. Volume of wastewater discharges to surface waters

1.4. The pollutants mass dumping

1.5. Generation of waste

2.     State Indicators

2.1. API Air Pollution Index

2.2. SI Standard Index index for the concentration of impurities in terms of maximum allowable concentrations

2.3. HF The Highest Frequency of exceeding the maximum permissible concentration

2.4. Specific weight of waste water samples that dont meet hygienic standards

2.5. The water quality of 2-nd category reservoirs of water use (recreation area)

2.6. Natural increase (loss) of the population

2.7. Climate change (average annual temperature and precipitation, humidity, level of water bodies)

2.8. Gross regional product (GRP)

2.9. Human Development Index (HDI)

3.     Reaction Indicators

3.1. The costs of environmental protection

3.2. Collection of payments for negative impact on the environment

3.3. Penalties for violation of environmental laws

3.4. Investments in fixed capital, aimed to protect the environment

3.5. The share of GRP accounted by environmentally clean goods and services

The first group of indicators pressure indicators includes indicators that reflect the parameters of human impact on the basic components of the environment: air, water bodies, land and forest fund, as well as on the fundamental properties of ecosystem: production of bioresources and pollution assimilation, which are considered through the indicators of a biodiversity and waste accumulation.

The second group of indicators state indicators contains the basic parameters of environmental quality and its major components that are reflected by various indicators of the pollution level. In addition, indicators, reflecting the general prosperity of the region's population, dependent on the quality of the environment and resources, reflecting the general level of economic development and differentiation of society in terms of economic development are included here.

Besides, in order to reflect the level of environmental region economy it is advisably to use GRP energy intensity, reflecting the general state of economy from the point of using the energy efficient technologies in it (which are also environmentally clean). Despite the seeming simplicity of such an indicator, its use is necessary, as it most completely reflects the efficiency of existing regional policy in the field of ecological economics and in fact without going into excessive detalization by an assessment of concrete instruments and mechanisms used for it, and reflects the final output result of the system.

Human development index (HDI), which reflects the general picture of modern society development and the possible heritage for future generations is also included in the second group of indicators.

The third group indicators of reaction includes a number of indicators that characterize different courses of the implemented in a region environmentaleconomic policy: implementation of costs for environmental protection, Collection of payments for negative impact on the environment, measures related to pollution prevention, etc.

The choice of concrete indicators was determined by the following conditions: the presence of a comparable official data over a sufficiently long period of time (510 years), the possibility of an adequate assessment of the overall region situation. In general, this set of indicators may be expanded at the expense of their concrete definition in different directions depending on the realizable goal, as well as the specifics of a particular region, by including more detailed information on municipal entities, types and substances effects; sectoral sign, more detailed segmentation of the environment components, regulatory institutions of the impact on environmental, etc.

For the most trustworthy assessment effectiveness of implemented in the area environmentaleconomic policy, it is needed to consider these indicators in the longterm dynamics, that will trace the measures taken in the field of environmental protection, and their effects, that are coming out in the parameters of human impact on the environment and quality characteristics of its main components.

The advantage of proposed indicators system for sustainable development of natureeconomic region system is that indicators in its structure may not only reflect the impact of anthropogenic pressures on the region ecosystem, but also on economic activity (through the degradation of natural resources and environmental quality) and also allow us to estimate the level of regional disparities (through the HDI and Gini coefficient), to identify the largest sources of regional environmental externalities, and also to assess the effectiveness (or ineffectiveness) of implemented in the region management measures to reduce them.

It should also be noted that the presented set of parameters is not fixed and rigidly confirmed. The basic principle which must be observed here, is the possibility to trace the most common indicators at the regional level and the effects exerted by the impact of decisions on the parameters of the environment and its major components. The condition of region ecosystem in the indicators system is reflected very detailed. The remaining components of regional systems (economic and social), are less reflected, but it is impossible to diagnose the problems of sustainable region development without analyzing them.

As a threshold value may be the target parameters of indicators, which is planned to reach in process of management of the region development (russian average, world average, MPC/MPN, the average for developed countries and etc). For some indicators rigid standards may absent, then as such kind of standard can be taken the best or average country values.

In order to determine specific indicators on the basis of the proposed system of indicators for sustainable environmentaleconomic region system development that reflect the most acute problems, it is proposed to use the following approach to the formation of problem field of sustainable development and selection the most problematic, requiring special attention indicators (fig. 1).

Figure 1 The algorithm for forming the problem field and selection of indicators of sustainable region development


In general, current situation [3] demonstrates the low efficiency of overall stimulation system to reduce negative impact on environment. As the regional bodies of power, the economic entities and population are also consider the need to take into account environmental factors in the organization of economic activity as extremely costly measure that doesnt conduct the improving of their economic efficiency. At the same time, world community has already developed approaches, which allow to provide the double effect from ecologization: both economic and environmental.


List of references

1.      Indicators of Sustainable Development, UN Department for Policy Coordination and Sustainable Development, December, 1994.

2.      Anopchenko T.U., Murzin A.D. The structure of socio-economic and environmental components of an integrated area development // Science and Education Journal. 2012. 1. P. 22 29.

3.      Murzin A.D. Comprehensive assessment of urbanized areas: economic, ecological and social aspects: monograph. - Saarbrucken: LAP LAMBERT Academic Publishing, 2012. 80 p.