Sverdlovsk region develops low-carbon strategy

Olga Podosenova

The Sverdlovsk region becomes a pilot territory for development of a regional low-carbon strategy. This region is the most energy and resources consuming not only in Russia, but in the whole world. Now it is the first region in Russia, which has officially approved the issue of greenhouse gases reduction and has proposed 25% of GHG emission reduction at the regional level.

The participants of the meeting "Coordination of low carbon development strategy of Sverdlovsk region till 2020 and fuel and energy complex strategy" have discussed possibilities to increase energy efficiency and have analysed the current and future energy balances of the region.

Plans of the Ural Energy is a separate segment of the project within the framework of the Agreement between the International Sustainable Energy Development Centre (ISEDС, Russia) and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (UK) financed by Low Carbon High Growth Strategic Programme Fund.

Vladimir Berdin, the Head of ISEDС department, has reported: “Russia has one of the world largest technical potentials for increasing energy efficiency - over 40 % of the current energy consumption level, or 403 million tons of conventional fuel. Reduction of burning of oil associated gas raises this value up to about 420 million tons. This value exceeds the growth of primary energy production in 2008-2020 stipulated by the State Energy Strategy of Russia for the period till 2030 by 244-270 million tons of conventional fuel.

Within the framework of the project, the best practices in Great Britain and other European countries, including the British Low-Carbon Plan and the German Climate Changes Strategy will be reviewed and analysed. This will be followed by the economic analysis, and strategic and systemic modeling with the reference to the Russian realities. The research will focus on such key branches of economics as energy, industry, transport, waste, and municipal housing. The obtained data will allow to prepare concrete proposals for the Ministry of economic development and the Ministry of energy of the Russian Federation and to create methodology for the Russian Low-carbon Strategy.

It is important to note that there are no documents in Russia that would formulate low-carbon strategies neither on the federal level, nor at regional levels. The basis for the Ural low-carbon strategy will include programmes on the energy saving and socio-economic development of the region till 2020. By April 2011, the draft document will be submitted for assessment to the Sverdlovsk Regional Government. The project on low-carbon strategy can promote displacement of energy trends in the in the Sverdlovsk Regional Strategy that is discussed now. It is important, because today Ural enterprises are among most resources consuming in Russia and in the world.