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The Siberian Times

Black snow falls in Omsk causing health concerns for residents

By The Siberian Times reporter
10 February 2014

Soot-coloured snowfall covers the ground in Siberia's second largest city.

Your snow seems quite black...? Picture:

Urgent checks are underway to analyse the cause of the black snow flakes with suspicions that the cause is a local thermal power station, TPP-5, that was working at overload capacity, said Rosprirodnadzor, the federal environmental, industrial and nuclear supervision agency. 

'We are receiving calls about this strange snow,' said a spokesman. 'From our fifth floor window, the snow looks like it is covered in dark and dirty soot. It's not what you expect in Siberia,' said one resident

The problem has occurred in the past, for example in December 2012. 'The plant earlier said it would replace a filter for one of its tubes at an estimated cost of 150 million rubles ($4.3 million),' reported RIA Novosti. On another occasion it snowed in summer in Omsk - in August 2012 - when aluminosilicate dust from a Gazpromneft oil refinery was sprinkled over the city. It was said to be harmless. 

In 2007, Omsk residents were left wondering about yellow snow, which got its color reportedly because of dust storms in Asia.

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