GOELRO plan (Russian: план ГОЭЛРО) was the first-ever Soviet plan for national economic recovery and development. It became the prototype for subsequent Five-Year Plans drafted by Gosplan. GOELRO is the transliteration of the Russian abbreviation for "State Commission for Electrification of Russia" (Государственная комиссия по электрификации России).

The Commission and Plan were initiated and supervised by Vladimir Lenin. Lenin's belief in electrification's central importance to the achievement of socialism is encapsulated in the popular Lenin quote, "Socialism is the Soviet power plus electrification of the whole country." [Lenin "Collected Works", vol. 31, page 516.]

The Commission was established by the Presidium of the VSNKh on February 21 1920 [http://www.springerlink.com/content/lh35mg7706n56561/ 50th anniversary of the Lenin Goélro Plan and Hydropower Development] ] in accordance with February 3 1920 VTsIK resolution on the electrification plan development.Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd ed., entry on "ГОЭЛРО", available online [http://slovari.yandex.ru/art.xml?art=bse/00020/05400.htm here] ] The head of the Commission was Gleb Krzhizhanovsky. In its work took part some 200 scientists and engineers, including Genrikh Graftio, Ivan Aleksandrov, Mikhail Shatelen and others. By the end of 1920 the Commission devised the "Russian SFSR Electrification Plan" ( _ru. «План электрификации Р.С.Ф.С.Р»), that was subsequently approved by the 8th Congress of Soviets on December 22 1920ru icon [http://www.kuzbassenergo.ru/goelro/ On GOELRO Plan - at Kuzbassenergo] ] and accepted by the Soviet government on December 21 1921. [ [http://www.turpion.org/php/paper.phtml?journal_id=pu&paper_id=4485 Physics in the USSR: stages in a long journey] ]

The Plan envisaged a major restructuring of the Soviet economy based on total electrification of the country. It aimed to realize Lenin's vision of "...the organization of industry on the basis of modern, advanced technology, on electrification which will provide a link between town and country, will put an end to the division between town and country, will make it possible to raise the level of culture in the countryside and to overcome, even in the most remote corners of land, backwardness, ignorance, poverty, disease, and barbarism." [Lenin "Collected Works", vol. 30, page 335.]

GOELRO Plan covered a ten to 15 year period. According to the Plan, the territory of the Russian SFSR was divided into eight regions, with distinct development strategies due to specific features of each region: Southern Region, Central Industrial region, Northern Region, Ural Region, Volga Region, Turkestan Region, Caucasus Region and Western Siberia Region. [ru icon [http://www.85goelro.rao-ees.ru/main.html?full=1&secid=109&docid=156 85th anniversary of GOELRO plan - Management] at the website of RAO UES] The Plan included construction of a network of 30 regional power plants, including ten large hydroelectric power plants, and numerous electric-powered large industrial enterprises. [ [http://www.springerlink.com/content/h3677572g016338u/ 70 Years of Gidroproekt and Hydroelectric Power in Russia] ] It was intended to raise the total national power output per year to 8.8 billion kWh, as compared to 1.9 billion kWh of the Imperial Russia in 1913. The Plan was basically fulfilled by 1931.

Ivan Aleksandrov was to subsequently head the Regionalisation Commission of Gosplan which divide the Soviet union into thirteen European and eight Asiatic oblasts, using rational economic planning rather than "the vestiges of lost sovereign rights". ["Ekonomicheskoe raionirovanie Rossii", Gosplan, Moscow 1921]

The cliche "Ilyich's lamp" (лампочка Ильича) for an electric bulb, a reference to Vladimir Ilyich Lenin, is a reminder of the Plan period.


External links

*ru icon [http://www.85goelro.rao-ees.ru/ 85th anniversary of GOELRO plan] at the website of RAO UES
* [http://www.rubricon.com/showbigimg.asp?id=211250689 Map of the electrification] from the Great Soviet Encyclopedia

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