Virgin Lands divided by an Ocean: The Fate of Grasslands in the Northern Hemisphere

David Moon, Alexander Chibilev, Sergei Levykin

Research output: Other contribution


This article by the geographers Sergei Chibilev and Sergei Levykin as seen in this version, translated and annotated by David Moon, assumes a number of parallels between cultivation and exploitation of the Russian steppe and the North American prairie, both past and current. The intense cultivation of the originally fallow expanse of land led to the first global ecological crisis in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. While the productivity of American soil has reached a limit, there are still enormous fallow regions in Russia. The ploughing of the steppes during the Soviet era was extremely destructive; now the challenge is to increase their productivity whilst maintaining the ecosystem of the steppe.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2013



  • Grasslands, Russia, North America, environmental history, comparative history

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