Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to the United Nations

Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to the United Nations

Statement by Deputy Permanent Representative Dmitry Chumakov at side event “Investing into Climate Smart Economies: Energy Efficiency for Sustainable Development Goals”

Excellencies, Dear Friends,

We are grateful to all partners for co-organizing this side event.

The Russian Federation is one of the key players in the world’s energy sector and we have developed a highly responsible attitude to our role in this regard. Our supplies are beneficial to the countries that experience deficit of energy resources. At the national level and beyond our borders, Russia’s energy policy and specific infrastructure projects are aimed at the achievement of SDG7 to ensure universal access to energy. Naturally, these measures intersect with other SDGs.

When it comes to SDG13 on climate action, we very often hear a call to switch to 100%-renewable sources of energy worldwide. As of today, it seems to be a beautiful and yet unrealistic slogan due to objective circumstances in many countries. The International Energy Agency and other specialized organizations clearly indicate that, despite the significance of renewable energy resources, fossil fuels will continue to account for 70% of the global energy mix even in 2040.

In order to achieve SDG7, we need to take into consideration the effective application of clean energy technologies in utilization of fossil fuels and a balanced form of exploitation of different energy resources in a clean, safe and sustainable manner. This will enable us to send a right signal to both governments and investors and contribute to modernization of the energy sector and efforts to combat climate change.

Therefore, one of the best solutions is to focus on developing technologies to increase the level of energy efficiency that will have a tangible effect on the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. In Russia, this responsibility lies with the Ministry of Economic Development that sees a significant potential in increasing energy efficiency of our country’s economy. To achieve this, we have adopted a Comprehensive Plan of Measures that primarily includes various ways of energy saving. This, obviously, requires investments. One of the most effective instruments to attract finance for energy-saving projects is energy saving performance contracts. They enable implementation of energy-saving measures using capital from an external investor while the return on the investments is provided as a result of the savings achieved. In 2016 alone, we had such contracts worth of nearly $110 million (7.3 billion RUB) and in 2017 that amount was doubled signifying rapid progress. Under the Comprehensive Plan, we are also working on banking solutions that would serve as models to bring in “green finance” to put in place energy efficiency projects.

Another example is the work of the Russian Development Bank or the VEB. On a regular basis, the VEB conducts analyses of Innovation Development Programmes of state corporations and major partially state-owned companies regarding implementation of efficient climate change prevention measures.

As we know, waste, and mainly organic waste, is a significant source of greenhouse gas emissions. In this regard, the Russian Development Bank is significantly contributing to the Federal Project entitled “Building Waste Management Infrastructure”. The VEB is one of initiators of construction of waste treatment plants in the Moscow Region using the Energy-from-Waste technology. Their total capacity will amount to 2.8 million tons of waste per year (which will cover about a quarter of all waste produced in the Moscow Region). The plants will generate up to 2.1 billion kWh of electricity per year from industrial and consumption waste, meaning – the electric power will be based on renewable energy resources. The project is financed by the Gazprombank and the VEB. Its overall value is $2.46 billion (or 155 billion RUB).

When it comes to the transport sector, there are multiple benefits to increase energy efficiency by using cleaner fuels such as natural gas. It is already in use in 85 countries. The costs of natural-gas-based automobiles are lower compared to petrol-based vehicles and here is another catch: the volume of greenhouse gas emissions is up to 30% less than what is emitted by petrol-based vehicles. That means that natural gas is capable of slashing carbon footprint of the transport sector while providing a safe, reliable and efficient alternative to petrol.

As motor fuel, it is used in the forms of liquefied natural gas and compressed natural gas (CNG). The density of CNG makes it transportable and suitable for powerful engines with high volumes of consumption. Thus, it has particularly good prospects for heavy-duty vehicles, water and railroad transport as well as agricultural machinery. The level of consumption of natural gas for transport is expected to reach 250 billion cubic meters by 2040. In this regard, we invite partners to explore the opportunities it provides, including for meeting their climate change mitigation targets.

The Russian Federation is taking comprehensive efforts to promote integration processes within the Eurasian Economic Union, including for energy efficiency. We support activities aimed at the achievement of SDGs in the spirit of uniting different stakeholders with the common vision for our region’s prosperity, sustainability and resilience to external shocks. Our event today serves as a good example of leadership by all of us. Let us continue our fruitful cooperation. Thank you.