Rosatom Says EU, Russia Must Sync Efforts to Attain Paris Agreement Goals

Russia and the European Union must synchronize efforts to arrive at a consensus on standards and mechanisms to attain the goals of the Paris Agreement, First Deputy Director General of Rosatom, Kirill Komarov, said at a Russian-European climate conference at the Skolkovo Innovation Center on Tuesday.

“I am confident that [these] climate goals have no borders, of course, preserving a green planet is our common objective,” Komarov noted, TASS reports.

“Apart from confirming the Paris Agreement’s common strategic goals, it is very important to ensure that our national and country-level mechanisms and standards are synchronized,” he went on to say.

“Such work could be started, for example, by mutually recognizing low-carbon ‘green’ certificates,” said the high-level Rosatom official.

According to him, the Ministry of Energy is currently finalizing work on a bill that will make it possible to use the mechanism of green certificates confirming that Russian consumers use electricity from renewable sources. “I think that now is the perfect time to start working together with [our] European Union partners and to devote our efforts to finding common ground rather than searching for differences and thinking about what taxes on carbon products should be imposed,” he stressed.

Komarov also pointed out that Russia and the EU don’t see eye to eye on recognizing nuclear power as green energy. “In any case, we respect the position of the European Union, but we believe however, that the ‘green’ path must take into consideration regional specifics and available natural resources, and of course the historical structure of a country’s generation,” he explained.

Nuclear power currently fulfills one-fifth of the country’s demand for electricity. Annually, nuclear plants prevent the emission of about 107 million tonnes of CO2 into the atmosphere, Komarov emphasized.

The Paris Agreement was signed on December 12, 2015, at the close of the landmark COP21 conference in the French capital. The ratifying states agreed to undertake endeavors to keep a global temperature rise this century well below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and to pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase even further to 1.5 degrees Celsius.