SVETLOGORSK, 14 February (BelTA) – Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko was asked a question about climate change that apparently also affected Belarus as he spoke with the staff of the bleached sulfate pulp plant at Svetlogorsk Pulp and Board Mill, BelTA has learned.
“We will succeed in some things and fail elsewhere. We need to act promptly,” the Belarusian leader believes. “Today it is perfectly clear, especially for residents of Gomel Oblast, that the climate has changed drastically. You already live in the climatic zone that earlier was south of Kiev,” he said.
Aleksandr Lukashenko noted that he discussed this problem with the governor of Gomel Oblast and asked him to outline changes that should be made in agriculture in the face of climate change and decide which crops to cultivate. “But you do not need to think about it, just take the crops that we have already tested and grow them in Gomel Oblast,” the head of state stressed.
The president pointed out that at his own household plot he also cultivates some crops that are unusual for Belarus, for example, watermelons. However, there are a lot of traditional plants like potatoes and the harvest is donated to various establishments. “This year we harvested almost 300 tonnes of potatoes from a small land plot. These we also donated. The monastery will receive it tomorrow or the day after tomorrow. We give harvest to people. Someone gets seeds of new varieties. I also look for new varieties, as a hobby,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.
Moreover, the animal husbandry industry focuses more on sheep breeding, and there are areas that are suitable for growing fodder for sheep. “We are also creating new breeds of animals for meat,” the president said.
He added that the agricultural industry of Gomel Oblast faces important tasks and this year will be decisive. “Either we bring Gomel Oblast to the proper level, or take strict measures in agriculture, like in Vitebsk Oblast. You have fallen back significantly in the agricultural sector. Not only because of ‘Chernobyl', lack of people, and so on. The organization is poor, some things have gone out of control,” the head of state noted.
Aleksandr Lukashenko believes that in the current situation the agricultural sector does not need a lot of workforce. “Unemployed people in villages is a bigger problem than the workforce shortage. Because you need to give them work, open new enterprises. We have everything in place in agriculture. There is efficient equipment. Today one modern tractor is worth ten tractors from the time when I worked in the agricultural sector. But we should organize this work, take care of this tractor,” the Belarusian president stressed.