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Moscow Aims to Carry Over Balance of Emissions Rights

Greenpeace members protesting Saturday near Moscow State University. Denis Sinyakov

Moscow does not plan to sell its unused Kyoto Protocol emissions rights and instead wants to carry them over to a new agreement, Kremlin advisor Alexander Bedritsky said Friday.

“Russia is going to carry the saved quotas in the Kyoto Protocol over to a new agreement,” Bedritsky said. “As far as I know, there are no plans to sell emission quotas.”

Under Kyoto, countries comfortably under their emissions targets can sell the difference in the form of AAUs to other nations. Russia has an inventory of billions of AAUs because of the collapse of its industry in the 1990s. Bedritsky said curbing greenhouse gas emissions would help stimulate new technologies and in turn economic growth.

Tackling the growth in emissions was necessary to show the current generation could take responsibility for future generations, he said.

Bedritsky stood by Russia’s offer to reduce its emissions by up to 25 percent from its 1990 emission figures, which, because of the collapse of Soviet-era industries in the 1990s, would still allow Russian emissions to grow in future.

He also said the Copenhagen talks were likely to result in a “political” rather than a legal agreement.

Russia expects the accord to be “global,” with participants agreeing that a 50 percent cut in greenhouse emissions by 2050 should come as a result of joint efforts of both developed and developing nations, he said.

President Dmitry Medvedev will go to Copenhagen for the final scheduled day of the UN climate change summit on Dec. 18. 

(Reuters, Bloomberg)

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