OPEN LETTER by Russian Non-Governmental Organisations, observers to the climate negotiations

Copenhagen, 14 December 2009

TO: Mr. Alexander Bedritsky
Advisor to the President of Russian Federation on issues of climate change
UNFCCC COP15, Copenhagen

Dear Mr. Bedritsky,

Russian non-governmental organisations – observers to the UN FCCC COP15 – support the statement by President of Russia Dmitry Medvedev of 14 December 2009 on the necessity for simultaneous taking commitments to reduce emissions by all major emitters of greenhouse gases.
We believe a legally binding agreement to be the best result of the negotiations. Given the complexity of the negotiation process, we urge that it is essential to continue the talks under the working group on the Kyoto Protocol to extend the protocol until a comprehensive, legally binding agreement that meets the current situation and includes the main positive elements of the Kyoto Protocol is developed.

In June 2009, the President made a statement that the cumulative contribution of Russia to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions is 30 billion tonnes of CO2 equivalent in the period from 1990 to 2020. This means that most of the unused Russia’s quotas in the period from 2008 to 2012 will be part of the Russia’s contribution in international efforts to reduce global greenhouse emissions. Therefore, we call on the Russian delegation to officially announce the inappropriate character of transfer of unused quotas from the Kyoto period to future periods, which will also enhance the goal of reducing greenhouse gases emissions.

In our opinion, the use of free Russian quotas within the period of the Kyoto Protocol is possible only for targeted environmental investments in strictly limited quantities - not more than 5% of their total volume.

However, we fully support the joint implementation projects, as they do not require spending quotas, but create additional emission reduction units, and, with following all the requirements of the Kyoto Protocol, contribute to actual modernization of Russian economy.

Russian non-governmental organisations once again declare that they do not consider nuclear energy as a renewable energy source and as a technology that could contribute to climate change mitigation. We ask you to make every effort to ensure that the Russian delegation abstains from considering nuclear energy as a technology for addressing climate change, as this could adversely affect the negotiations, but also damage the image of Russia among the international community.

We also ask you to make efforts to expedite the signing of the Climate Doctrine of Russia with the subsequent development and adoption of the Action Plan, ensuring peak emissions in 2015, with their subsequent reduction.

Yours respectfully,

WWF Russia
Greenpeace Russia
Russian Socio-Ecological Union
Bellona Russia