Russia is the world’s fourth-largest emitter of greenhouse gases (GHGs) after China, the United States and India. Russia signed on to the Paris climate accord in 2015, but dragged its feet on legislative ratification. This week, the government finally announced it will ratify the agreement. The additional legislation supporting the Paris accord could be debated in the Duma even before the end of this year.
Russia’s targets include an unimpressive 25 % reduction in GHG emissions from 1990 levels (1990, the year before Soviet industry collapsed, is used as the base year for Russian emissions). Russian emissions have since fallen so far that the country can actually increase its emissions through 2030 and still hit the 25 % reduction target – even overlooking the carbon sinks of its forests (LULUCF activities). The ratification and formulation of national legislation should be integrated into Russia’s “Ecology” national project.