Donetsk Oblast – Cleanest Industrial Region recognised by UNESCO
The Donets'k Oblast or Region was established in the southeastern parts of Ukraine on July 17, 1932. The Donets'k Region is 26.5 thousand square km making it one of the largest Oblasts in the country. This region has five million inhabitants and is home to all the important industrial companies. In 1970 UNESCO acknowledged Donets'k as one of the cleanest industrial regions throughout the whole world.
The Donets’k Oblast has twenty-eight cities contained within its boundaries. Artemivs’k, Slov’yans’k, Mariupol, Horlivka, Kramators’k, Makijivka and Donets’k are some of the cities included within this region. The cities situated in the northern parts of the Donets’k Oblast are more conducive to agriculture. In general, the Donets’k Region has moderate, continental weather, which means that summer temperatures range from between 21°C to 32°C and -12°C to 7°C in winter. During the year the average rainfall in the region is 556 millimeters and there is a fair amount of snow during the winter months.
The physical geography of Donets’k is made up of a steppe landscape, which means that the land is similar to a prairie or a plain without trees. The land is dry and consists mainly of short grass and shrubs, although it can support trees if they are situated near rivers and lakes. South of Donets’k is the Azov Sea, which is part of the Black sea. The Azov Sea is a great vacation spot and is a popular destination during the summer months when the weather is good.
The inhabitants of Donets’k are mainly Ukrainians, although there are a large number of inhabitants that are of Russian origin. Most inhabitants speak Russian, while the rest of the country tends to be Ukrainian speaking. The majority of the local people in Donets’k belong to the Ukrainian Orthodox Church. However, churches such as the Greek and Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, Protestant as well as the Judaic and Islamic synagogues are also popular.
Football is a popular sport here in Donets’k and there are three professional football clubs in the region alone. Donets’k Oblast will also have the privilege of hosting some of the matches to be played in Ukraine during the 2012 UEFA European Football Championships. The matches will be played at the Shakhtar Stadium, which is still to be built, and at the RSK Olimpiyskyi Stadium. The sailboat championships also take part here in Donets’k on the Kalmius River.