bneGREEN: Russia draws up carbon operator rules

bneGREEN: Russia draws up carbon operator rules
Emblem of Russian Ministry of Economic Development. / Wiki commons
By bne IntelliNews December 15, 2021

The Russian Ministry for Economic Development has drawn up the procedure for determining payments for services provided by the operator of the register of carbon units. The carbon operator rules are submitted for approval to the the Ministry of Finance, the Federal Anti-Monopoly Service and the Central Bank of Russia.

As followed by bne IntelliNews, the government is formalising the decarbonisation strategy as Russia is revving up to launch a four-decade-long, RUB480 trillion ($6.5 trillion) investment campaign to reduce carbon emissions by 60% before 2050 from 2019 levels

Moving forward with giving shape to carbon regulation, the EconMin has proposed setting a maximum price for certain operations: opening an account in the register, as well as registering a climate project, can cost no more than RUB18,000, and making entries about the release of carbon units will cost no more than 1% of the cost of carbon units. 

In order to credit or debit carbon credits from an account, it is proposed to charge no more than RUB5 for each unit. The Moscow Exchange, VEB.RF state development institution and Gazprombank could jointly run the register.

"Establishing who is going to operate the register, as well as the rules related to carbon units, are some of the steps necessary to create the base for climate projects and to account for emissions in Russia correctly," VTB Capital (VTBC) commented.

The analysts remind that the recently approved Sakhalin trading experiment (which is to define the base for the national carbon trading system) has a CO2 price of RUB150-2,000/tonne ($2-$27/tonne) if the permitted output is exceeded, while MinEconomy’s preliminary version of the low-carbon strategy mentioned a possible RUB500-RUB700/tonne price after 2030. 

However, the World Bank estimated that Russia needs a price of $44-$130/tonne (from 2025) to reach carbon neutrality, while the International Monetary Fund puts it at $50/tonne. VTBC previously estimated that a CO2 price of $30/tonne would make it possible to decarbonise 50% of GHG emissions in Russia.