Putin tells G20 that Russia fully committed to reducing carbon emissions & calls for global cooperation on climate change fight

Follow RT on Russian President Vladimir Putin claimed his country is leading the way in switching to greener energy, calling on other nations to follow suit as part of a meeting of world leaders focused on tackling climate change on Sunday.

“We believe that G20 members should lead the world in creating universal, fair and, importantly, transparent rules for climate regulation, when implementing climate and environmental initiatives,” Putin told the second day of this weekend’s summit of states with large economies. 

Such rules need to be based on mutually accepted models for counting and monitoring the emission and capture of greenhouse gasses.

Putin commended what he believes is Russia’s progress made over the past several years.

“The share of carbon-neutral sources of power – nuclear, hydropower, wind and solar plants – has surpassed 40% in Russia. If you count in natural gas, which among hydrocarbons has the lowest carbon footprint, that share would be 86%. It’s one of the best results in the world,” he said.

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Russia is determined to reach full carbon neutrality no later than 2060, Putin said. This target is later than what a lot of other countries established for themselves, as they plan to be carbon-neutral by 2050. The issue was raised previously by the UK, as PM Johnson told President Putin that he hopes that “Russia will raise that target to achieving net zero by 2050,” in a phone call earlier this week.

Also, it is important to be accurate in assessing how much emissions various sources of power actually produce, as solar power, for example, is four times worse than nuclear power in that regard, the Russian leader estimated.

The world community needs to test various climate projects in terms of their net impact on emissions per dollar of investment, Putin suggested. “It may well turn out that, for example, conservation of forests in Russia or in Latin America would be more effective than investing in renewables in some nations,” he said.

He added that Russia will not only be reducing greenhouse gasses emissions by its economy, but will also invest in capturing them through reforesting projects, nature preservation, and improving efficiency of agriculture.

Russia realizes the threat posed to it by climate change and sees the fight against it a natural point for international cooperation for decades to come, the president said.

The two-day summit of G20 leaders is being held in Rome. The leaders of Russia and China are taking part in the summit remotely via a video link.

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