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Environment

Russian parliament approves law to curb greenhouse gas emissions

2 minute read

Sun shines through steam rising from chimneys of a power plant in Moscow, Russia November 13, 2019. REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov

MOSCOW, June 1 (Reuters) - Russia's lower house of parliament approved a law on Tuesday that would limit greenhouse gas emissions in an initiative described as a first step towards carbon regulation in the country.

Russia has previously signalled its acceptance of the Paris Agreement, which commits countries to setting targets every five years to curb greenhouse gas emissions. But Moscow has faced criticism from environmentalists for shunning compulsory emissions targets for companies.

The law -- which still needs to be approved by the upper house of parliament and signed by President Vladimir Putin -- would oblige companies producing large quantities of greenhouse gases to report their emissions.

Vladimir Burmatov, chairman of the parliamentary committee on ecology and environmental protection, said the bill was a first step towards carbon regulation in the country.

Russia joined the Paris climate change pact in 2019. New targets were due to be announced last year, but that has been put off until later this year because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Russia's self-imposed target, reiterated last year by Putin, is for its emissions in 2030 to be 30% lower than in 1990. It is on course to exceed that goal easily due to the massive de-industrialisation that followed the fall of the Soviet Union.

Russia's climate envoy told Reuters last month that a global trend towards ambitious new targets amounted to an "unreasonable race", and Moscow would focus on the commitments it has made so far. read more

Reporting by Gabrielle Tétrault-Farber; Editing by Christina Fincher

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