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Russia can ratify Paris climate agreement in 2019 — presidential adviser

Russian presidential adviser also emphasized that mechanisms for implementing the agreement are required

MOSCOW, May 15. /TASS/. Russia will not isolate itself from the decisions of the Paris climate agreement and may join it in 2019, Russian Presidential Adviser Alexander Bedritsky told a TASS news conference.

"In my view, it will be ratified," he said when asked whether Russia could ratify the agreement in 2019.

"I am confident, because this agreement poses no threat to our country. On the contrary, it opens up new opportunities, so we cannot be isolated in this regard," Bedritsky said, adding that Russia is interested in implementing the document.

He also emphasized that mechanisms for implementing the agreement, which is to come into effect in 2012, are required. Bedritsky added that the Kyoto Protocol aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions proved to be effective.

"It did not cause any economic damage. We failed to take advantage of the opportunities. We could have had, for example, 500 joint projects instead of 138. In that case, our companies would have got greater benefits," Bedritsky said.

The Paris Agreement, which has triggered huge expectations in terms of combating global climate change, came into force on November 4, 2016, for the countries that have joined it. By November 24, the document was ratified by 139 countries. The aim of the agreement is to prevent an increase in the average temperature on the planet by more than two degrees Celsius compared to the pre-industrial area by 2100. Scientists believe that a more significant increase in temperatures can lead to irreversible environmental effects.

Russian needs plan of adaptation to climate change

Russia needs a plan to adapt to climate change, Bedritsky told TASS.

According to earlier reports, Russian President Vladimir Putin endorsed the country’s environmental security strategy till the year 2030, which outlined threats and challenges to Russia’s environmental security, as well as basic goals and tasks of the state policy in that sphere. Thus, according to the strategy, the country’s environmental security is being impacted by factors stemming from the global climate change as they can entail "deficit of food and drinking water, aggravate competition for renewable resources."

"Our priority task is to work out a concept of adaptation [to the climate change - TASS] planning and an adaptation plan for all sectors of the economy," Bedritsky said. "Such decision have already been passed and it will make it possible to lower threat to our economic interests in various sectors. It means that basic political decision have already been made and efforts are now being taken to implement them."

"Russia’s authorities agree that the global climate change in a real problem, including for our country," he said at a news conference at TASS. He noted however that the global climate change can have both negative and positive impacts but the former seem to be outweighing.