Four years after the 2015 Paris Agreement was signed, Russia has officially announced its participation in the climate accord. As Russia is the world’s fourth largest emitter, observers of the country’s climate policy welcomed the decision.
“The Russian Federation has accepted the Paris Agreement and is becoming a full-fledged participant of this international instrument,” said Ruslan Edelgeriev, the President’s Climate Advisor, told the United Nations Climate Action Summit in New York.
“Russia is already playing a leading role in reducing greenhouse gas emissions compared to the 1990 base-line,” he continued. “Our total emissions over this period have decreased almost by half. This represent 41 billion tonnes of CO2 equivalent which on the planetary scale has allowed to cumulatively hold global warming for an entire year.”
“Russia is making another colossal contribution to combatting CO2 emissions and CO2 sequestration which is not reflected in the contributions but is a crucial factor in this effort. These are Russia’s boreal forests which are the lungs of the planet, ” Edelgeriev said.
Russia’s announcement means that there are now eleven countries yet to formally ratify the Paris Agreement, including Angola, Eritrea, Iran, Iraq, Kyrgyzstan, Lebanon, Libya, South Sudan, Suriname, and Yemen.