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  • Author: Marco Siddi
  • Publication Date: 09-2018
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Finnish Institute of International Affairs
  • Abstract: Gas trade between the European Union and Russia increased considerably in both 2016 and 2017, despite the ongoing political crisis. Simultaneously, two long-standing disputes in the EU-Russia gas relationship – regarding Gazprom’s monopolistic practices and the EU’s third energy package – were settled. Russian companies have invested in new infrastructural projects for the export of gas to Europe, including the launch of the Yamal LNG terminal in December 2017 and the construction of the TurkStream and Nord Stream 2 pipelines. However, significant challenges remain for the relationship, most notably the intra-EU controversy on Nord Stream 2 and uncertainty about future gas transit in Ukraine.
  • Topic: Energy Policy, International Political Economy, International Affairs, Geopolitics
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe
  • Author: Laura Solanko
  • Publication Date: 01-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Finnish Institute of International Affairs
  • Abstract: As was the case in most developing and transition countries, Russia's electricity sector was dominated by a vertically integrated, state-controlled monopoly. The common problems of ageing infrastructure, large distribution losses, very low retail tariffs, inefficient management and increasing tightness of supply encouraged many countries to embark on large reforms to liberalize their power sectors during the 1990s. In Russia, the reform started somewhat later, but to the surprise of many it has since proceeded very swiftly.
  • Topic: Corruption, Economics, Energy Policy
  • Political Geography: Russia
  • Author: Vadim Kononenko
  • Publication Date: 09-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Finnish Institute of International Affairs
  • Abstract: Cooperation between the EU and Russia in the field of energy efficiency has come under the spotlight in the past two years. In Europe and Russia alike, enthusiasm and expectations are rising that energy efficiency will become an area for successful cooperation including the EU-Russia Partnership for Modernization and other frameworks for cooperation. Yet, the practicalities of that cooperation can still be characterized as being in the "pilot phase". This has become apparent in most of the interviews conducted during this study. Despite the enthusiasm, there is a noticeable and recurring feeling of uncertainty over how the cooperation might turn out in practice and whether the declared goals and intentions will be matched by material results. At the same time, the view that was also commonly expressed was that the actors involved in the cooperation activities were ready and willing to steer cooperation forwards onto a more project-oriented footing, not focusing on merely talking and exchanging views and experiences.
  • Topic: Energy Policy, Regional Cooperation, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe
  • Author: Vadim Kononenko
  • Publication Date: 11-2010
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Finnish Institute of International Affairs
  • Abstract: The adoption of the new energy efficiency legislation in Russia in 2009 has led to anticipation that a new exciting avenue of cooperation is about to open up in Russia-EU relations. The EU has been called upon to support the Russian initiatives as they would make its energy relations with Russia more stable. Furthermore, because both Russia and the EU are working towards the same goal of making their respective economies more energy efficient, the two are natural partners. This partnership is often postulated in terms of transferring European investments and technologies to Russia’s emerging energy efficiency market.
  • Topic: Security, Energy Policy, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe
  • Author: Anna Korppoo
  • Publication Date: 06-2009
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Finnish Institute of International Affairs
  • Abstract: The Russian Cabinet discussed a draft 'climate doctrine' on 23 April 2009. The document, opened for comments 28 May 2009, is a political declaration on the approach to climate change. The debate around the doctrine was largely based on the scientific report published by the Hydrometeorological Service of Russia (Roshydromet) in February 2009. This document recognizes climate change as a human-induced phenomenon and acknowledges the main characteristics of the changes expected.
  • Topic: Climate Change, Energy Policy, Environment
  • Political Geography: Russia, Eastern Europe
  • Author: Linda Jakobson, Anna Korppoo, Johannes Urpelainen, Antto Vihma, Alex Luta
  • Publication Date: 05-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Finnish Institute of International Affairs
  • Abstract: The fifteenth Conference of Parties to be held in Copenhagen in December 2009 has been set as the political deadline for establishing a comprehensive regime to address the dramatic threat of climate change and follow up the Kyoto Protocol. The EU has a convening role in the position formation for the negotiations as the newly elected presidential administration of the US will need all the time available to establish its position for Copenhagen.
  • Topic: Climate Change, Energy Policy, Treaties and Agreements
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, Japan, China, India
  • Author: Anna Korppoo, Aleksandra Novikova, Maria Sharmina
  • Publication Date: 12-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Finnish Institute of International Affairs
  • Abstract: In June 2009, President Medvedev announced that the Russian Federation could limit its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions growth to-10 to 15% by 2020, compared to 1990 levels. In August 2009, this commitment was confirmed by the Russian delegation as Russia's midterm target. Russia further committed to limiting emissions by 22-25% in comparison to the 1990 level by 2020 in the EU-Russia Summit in Stockholm in November.
  • Topic: Climate Change, Energy Policy, Treaties and Agreements
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe
  • Author: Mikko Patokallio
  • Publication Date: 09-2008
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Finnish Institute of International Affairs
  • Abstract: In recent years, Russia's resurgence has been driven by favourable conditions rather than solid foundations. Despite the favourable conditions, Russia's resurgence has only achieved mixed results. Buoyed by economic growth, Russia has become wealthy, assertive and confident; but the country has also alienated and provoked its neighbours and the West. Sustaining these conditions is unlikely due to problems resulting from Russia's internal structural weaknesses and assertive foreign policy. Without change, these problems are likely to worsen. Energy exports – the cornerstone of Russia's resurgence – are set to decline. The end of this boom threatens Russia's domestic stability and ability to tackle other long-term threats as external resistance to Russia hardens.
  • Topic: Economics, Energy Policy
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Asia
  • Author: Anna Korppoo
  • Publication Date: 11-2008
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Finnish Institute of International Affairs
  • Abstract: According to the most recent government position, Russia is reluctant to accept binding greenhouse gas emission reduction commitments under the post-2012 regime that will succeed the Kyoto Protocol. Russia joined the Kyoto Protocol in anticipation of gains and made further demands in return for its ratification. The Kyoto Protocol was never seen as an environmental pact in Russia, but rather as a means of gaining economic and political benefits. The post-Kyoto deal will be entirely different for Russia compared to the Kyoto Protocol, as Russia would be expected to reduce its emissions in order to persuade developing countries to join. The main reason for Russia's reluctance is economic growth, which is expected to automatically lead to increased greenhouse gas emissions. However, this view is open to dispute. Climate change is not regarded as an acute environmental problem in Russia. Many Russian scientists believe that Russia could actually gain from climate change, and the IPCC is also predicting initial positive effects. A significant percentage of the Russian public does not approve of spending taxpayers' money on climate change mitigation, and due to the lack of democracy their views would not put pressure on the government's climate politics. As environmental concern cannot drive Russian participation in the post-2012 regime, it would be more productive to focus on the Russian interest in being recognised as an international actor, or on certain concrete policies such as energy efficiency, which carry some economic weight.
  • Topic: Climate Change, Energy Policy, Environment
  • Political Geography: Russia