Position Paper on Negotiations on Climate Change and the Suggested Steps by the Russian Government
In a fight to mitigate and adapt to the effects of climate change, the Russian government acknowledges that there is an immediate need to collectively take action to combat this global issue. Russia feels that this can be accomplished, with the implementation of strict resolutions, whilst avoiding any detrimental effects to a growing economy. In 1997, Russia made a responsible decision to join The Kyoto Protocol. Albeit it a small step on the long road to reduce CO2 emissions; it was never the less, a decisive action which proved Russia’s commitment and accountability to reduce climate change. Originally Russia set out to reduce its CO2 emissions by 5% since 1990. Today, however, Russia has re-evaluated its target to a 15% reduction by 2020. To date, Russia has already successfully cut more emissions than required by the Kyoto Protocol. Due to its size and geography – much of Russia being located in the Polar Regions, It is expected to be hit hardest by climate change. Climate change is expected to manifest itself in the form of increased frequencies and severity of natural phenomena such as floods, winter melts, and gas leaks. According to Russian Natural Resources Minister Yury Truntyev, “Over the last 100 years, sea levels have risen approximately 10 centimetres – if this tendency continues they will rise by 10 to 20 centimetres by 2050. If the oceans rise by 10 centimetres by 2050 to 2070, a significant portion of St. Petersburg and Yamal could flood – if they rise by 20 centimetres the Arkangelsk and Murmansk regions are at risk of flooding as well as a number of other regions in the country.” This in itself is proof of the severity and importance Russia places on the negotiations and fundamental policies members of the UN can agree and act upon.
Russia supports the position of the Kyoto Protocol to offset the carbon emissions of the world. Although strongly believes that other key polluters need to re-access the importance they place on the implementation of the Kyoto Protocol policies. In the words of President Dmitry Medvedev “The problem of climate change has to be addressed by everyone or not at all.” For Russia to commit to radical change regarding their environmental policies, confirmation of likewise policies must be undertaken by all participants of this UN assembly. Negotiations should begin with the recognition and consideration of the following statements: • Developed countries have a greater responsibility for the emission and concentration of greenhouse gases and, therefore, must move towards and adopt the international targets to limit carbon emissions. • Developing countries are at a key stage where they have the opportunity to implement lower carbon emission strategies in regard to industrial productions and economical projects. • The Clean Development Mechanism of the Kyoto Protocol is a vital step in creating projects that aim to reduce the GHG emission quantity and is extremely important in involving developing countries in climate change mitigation efforts. However, it is imperative to improve the CDM system. Such improvements include: · Developed countries, such as The United States of America, are not tied down to the policies set in place by the Kyoto Protocol. The CDM credits generated allow them to emit more greenhouse gases than their commitments require when in fact they should be exploring ways to reduce, not increase, their emissions.
· CDM systems have been criticised by nations for being too expensive and for improvements to be made it is necessary for the responsible parties to lower the transaction costs of CDM’s to allow for future development.
· Improvement of CDM technology transfers needs to be made, as developing countries will be negatively affected by the free trade scheme, which will ultimately lead the developing countries into more...
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