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Russia Warns Against ‘Chaotic’ Fossil Fuels Exit

An employee gestures near the largest walking dragline excavator operating at the Vostsibugol open pit coal mine, part of the En+ Group near the Irkutsk region town of Tulun, Dec. 6. EPA / Maxim Shipenkov / TASS

Russia on Wednesday warned against a "chaotic" exit from fossil fuels, while welcoming the "compromise" deal reached at the COP28 summit in Dubai on transitioning away from them.

"We have at every opportunity stressed the consequences of a chaotic exit without the backing of science," Ruslan Edelgeriyev, Russian President Vladimir Putin's special envoy for climate issues, was quoted by TASS news agency as saying.

"We cannot ignore the diverse needs of people around the world, including the need for affordable and reliable energy," he said.

"The final deal will probably not satisfy everyone but that only shows it is a compromise."

The agreement struck in Dubai on Wednesday calls for "transitioning away from fossil fuels in energy systems, in a just, orderly and equitable manner."

Russia is one of the main gas, oil and coal producers in the world.

According to many experts, Siberia and the Russian Arctic are some of the regions in the world most affected by climate change.

In recent years, they have been setting new records for high temperatures and have been hit by giant fires.

But discussion of climate issues is virtually absent from public discourse in Russia, particularly since the start of the Ukraine offensive in February 2022.

The government has also cracked down on environmental organizations and eased anti-pollution regulations to help the sanctions-hit economy.

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