Ecology Minister encourages climate action in Russia
Paris Climate Conference/Russia – Communiqué issued by the Ministry of Ecology, Sustainable Development and Energy
Paris, 28 October 2015
Ségolène Royal visited Russia at the French President’s request, in the framework of preparations for COP21.
She met Vladimir Putin’s special adviser on climate issues, the Deputy Prime Minister and the ministers responsible for energy and natural resources, as well as high-level businesses and scientists actively involved with climate issues.
She delivered a lecture at Moscow State University (MGU) to more than 30 students and professors about the challenges of the energy transition and green growth. After recalling the already-visible consequences of climate change, she explained the necessity and appropriateness of switching to a low-carbon economy, which is a source of wellbeing, investment and jobs, thanks to energy efficiency, clean transport and renewable energy. Quoting the Russian writer Dostoyevsky (“each of us is responsible for everything”), Ségolène Royal called on the whole of civil society – particularly NGOs, researchers and young people – to make active efforts to secure a fair, ambitious and operational agreement on the climate.
The visit to Moscow provided an opportunity:
to note the effects of climate change in Russia, on the melting of the permafrost in Siberia and the destruction of the boreal forest by fires;
to call for a reduction in coal consumption in favour of renewable energy and gas, a transition energy that emits fewer greenhouse gases than other hydrocarbons;
to call on Russia to establish a carbon price in order to gear investment towards a low-carbon economy. During the discussions, Russian businesses supported this approach;
to mobilize Russian businesses to commit themselves, in cooperation with French businesses, to practical actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve energy efficiency. Ségolène Royal invited them to propose their solutions during Action Week and the side events organized in Paris during the Climate Conference;
to emphasize possible cooperation between Russian and French scientists and industrialists in the fields of energy efficiency, geothermal power, energy storage and satellites enabling the effects of climate change to be measured in real time.
The Russian authorities confirmed their commitment to supporting the adoption in Paris of a binding agreement applicable to all.
During the visit, Ségolène Royal officially passed on a letter from the French President inviting Vladimir Putin to take part in the summit of heads of state and government, which will be held in Paris from 30 November 2015, to give a political boost to the negotiation of an ambitious climate agreement./.