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The Minister drew attention to the fact that the tasks voiced by the President of Russia to reduce the accumulated net greenhouse gas emissions faster than Europe over the next 30 years can only be fulfilled with the transition to an intensive low-carbon development scenario, which is already enshrined in the national strategy. “The scenario that we had as a baseline becomes inertial or conservative, and the one that was an active scenario for us, is now becoming a baseline scenario,” he explained, speaking at a round table on climate at the Higher School of Economics as part of the XXII April International Scientific Conference on the problems of economic and social development.

According to him, large Russian companies are investing in forestry projects abroad, and not in domestic ones. It is necessary to achieve a dynamic reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by introducing strict monitoring and control in this area. This will require a series of actions that will address both reducing greenhouse gas emissions and increasing the absorptive capacity of all ecosystems.

“Today we have adopted a model of soft and phased implementation of the climate regulation system, when at the first stage we give the opportunity to companies, but we do not force them to do so. At the same time, in some territories there are proposals to implement a more stringent model related to quotas and obligations, focused on achieving carbon neutrality by regions in the near future, ”said Maxim Reshetnikov.

He also stressed that the work itself to reduce greenhouse gas emissions has been going on for a long time. “Compared to the 90s, we have significantly reduced the volume of emissions – by more than 2 times, and this is not only a consequence of the transformational economic recession, but also a consequence of the fact that the new economic growth that was – it has already gone and is going on a fundamentally different a technological base that implies a lower carbon footprint of the economy. We must remember this when we talk about Russia’s contribution to the climate agenda, ”the minister said.

The Minister also noted that when calculating the absorptive capacity of forests, only managed forests are taken into account, but not all forests in Russia can now be classified in this category. Therefore, the country needs to step up efforts related to reforestation, as well as direct its efforts to protect against forest fires. This means that the climate agenda implies quite serious changes in approaches to the management of Russian forests. The Ministry of Economic Development is preparing relevant proposals on this part.

By autumn, according to the minister, Russia will have an additional source of investment in forestry projects. The department has already noted the readiness and desire to invest in these projects, including from domestic business. Speaking about the completion of the formation of the legislative base, Reshetnikov called on Russian business to invest in Russian climate projects. “We want to create conditions for them to invest these funds in our country. This requires the creation of legislation on the regulation of greenhouse gas emissions. ”Recall that the relevant bill was adopted last week in the first reading by the State Duma. In addition, the climatic track also includes a package of documents on “green” financing, which the Ministry of Economic Development plans to submit to the Government in May. The package includes a national taxonomy system for green and transition projects, methodology and other documents required to launch green finance at the end of the year.

Reshetnikov also touched upon the issues of adapting the economy to climate change. Speaking about reducing CO2 emissions and increasing the absorptive capacity of ecosystems, the minister recalled that greenhouse gas emissions have great inertia. “We must reduce their impact, mitigate them, reduce their speed. But we must prepare our industries to adapt. In this regard, the Ministry of Economic Development has already released a methodology for the formation of approaches to adaptation to climate change, and this year all departments should prepare their strategies, ”he said.

The minister stressed that issues related to low-carbon development are the next technological revolution. This includes technologies of hydrogen energy and electric transport, renewable energy sources, as well as nuclear energy technologies, where Russia is considered the leader. “One of the main drivers of this agenda is our business: our large exporting companies and major banks, which see risks in this and are ready to actively neutralize them. We see what a powerful request is for green financing, ”- said the head of the department.

Maxim Reshetnikov summarized that without broad discussion and understanding on the part of the expert and educational community, large export-oriented and medium-sized businesses, all these processes will not gain the necessary momentum for implementation.

A source: Ministry of Economic Development of the Russian Federation

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EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and / or sentence structure not be perfect.

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