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Russia has destroyed over 60,000 hectares of Ukrainian forest worth almost US$360 million

Monday, 8 April 2024, 10:55
Russia has destroyed over 60,000 hectares of Ukrainian forest worth almost US$360 million
Stock photo: Getty Images

More than 60,000 hectares of forests worth at least UAH 14 billion (about US$359.2 million) have been completely destroyed by the Russians in the territories they occupy since the beginning of the full-scale war.

Source: an investigation by

Details: Using satellite imagery, has been able to establish that over the two years of the full-scale war, the Russians have completely destroyed more than 60,000 hectares of forests in the territories they occupy. 


"The minimum estimate states that the total value of the lost forest exceeds UAH 14 billion – this is only direct damage, i.e. the value of the wood that could have been obtained from these more than 60,000 hectares. These losses do not take into account the environmental consequences, which can be much more expensive to remedy," the investigation says. 

The Holy Mountains National Nature Park, located in Kramatorsk and Bakhmut districts, is highlighted as one of the natural areas that have suffered the most in Donetsk Oblast. Combat actions have been conducted in this area since the full-scale invasion began, resulting in the destruction of 80% of the park.

The Russians are also actively deforesting Luhansk Oblast, where only 11% of the territory was covered by forests before the full-scale war. As Luhansk Oblast is predominantly a steppe region, forests have a very important function there: they protect against sandstorms, retain moisture and stop soil erosion.

In addition, about 40-45% of the forests in Kharkiv Oblast are now mined or have been damaged by fire.

During the 2022 occupation of part of Kherson Oblast – one of the least forested (5%) regions in Ukraine – a significant part of the forests suffered from fires, attacks and deforestation.  

The forests of Kherson Oblast were also badly affected when the Kakhovka hydroelectric power plant was blown up in June 2023. Almost 55,000 hectares of forest on the left (east) bank of the Dnipro River were flooded.


  • The Russians have caused UAH 2.2 trillion (US$56.4 billion) worth of damage to the Ukrainian environment since the start of the full-scale invasion.

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