Appeal Social Forum of Energy Efficiency & Climate Change
On 7-18 December 2009, the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change is to be held in Copenhagen. Leaders from nearly all countries of the world will prepare a new agreement on climate change prevention to extend the Kyoto Protocol that ends in 2012.
While fully supporting the aspiration of the international community to reach a new agreement in order to stop the negative impact on the environment, we express interest on the part of civil society and business and expert communities in the promotion of cooperation on combating climate change, improving energy efficiency, and expanding the market of ecosystem services in the interests of sustainable development and expect that Russia will be actively involved in this process.
The Russian government has recently taken a series of important steps to raise energy efficiency and prevent climate change. These include the proposal of the Russian president to achieve a 20-25% cut in greenhouse gas emissions against the 1990 base level by the year 2020, a law on energy efficiency, the intensification of processes dealing with joint implementation projects, and the establishment of the office of Presidential Climate Advisor.
Yet, we think that Russia’s position in this area is not active enough. Today, economic growth must be achieved on the background of greenhouse gas reduction. To this end, it is imperative that we promote better energy efficiency and energy saving, renewable energy sources, and national mechanisms for emissions allowance trading and ecosystem services compensation.
There is no doubt that Russia should play a leading part in international negotiations on issues related to the prevention of climate change. This would contribute to global progress and allow Russia to attract substantial resources for retooling production facilities, improving energy efficiency, and advancing sustainable development through measures including
- Account of the unused reserve of the national emissions allowance under the Kyoto Protocol;
- Promotion of joint implementation projects and earmarked environmental investments; and
- Expansion of international cooperation regarding environmental and economic mechanisms and payments for ecosystem services, including protection of forests, wetlands, and other natural resources.
All the above measures will accelerate the nation’s sustainable development and improve the positioning of Russia in the world as both an energy producing country and an environmental donor.
These challenges may not be met unless addressed collectively by the government, communities, and individuals. Work is now underway on setting up an Institute for Sustainable Development as a nongovernmental policy institution to consolidate the synergies of the expert community. On 30 September 2009, a Social Forum for Energy Efficiency and Climate Change began functioning in Moscow. The forum was established as a platform to bring together representatives of civil society and business and as a site for building constructive international partnerships. We invite all interested organizations and individuals to join.