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2 Nov, 2021 13:51

Russia joins COP26 agreement to end deforestation as Putin dubs conservation a 'key component' of battling climate change

Russia joins COP26 agreement to end deforestation as Putin dubs conservation a 'key component' of battling climate change

Russia is in full support of the joint declaration on forests and land use agreed by participants of the ongoing COP26 climate change conference, President Vladimir Putin announced on Tuesday.

Speaking via a recorded video message, Putin revealed that Russia completely backs all the agreed measures to battle deforestation, noting that the country is home to "around 20% of the world's forest land."

The Russian president chose not to travel to the event, taking place in Glasgow, instead opting to send a delegation.

"Russia supports the draft joint declaration on forests and land-use proposed for approval at today's meeting," he said. "We expect its implementation to facilitate closer partnership between all interested states in forest conservation."

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According to the president, Russia's drive to achieve carbon neutrality by 2060 centers around the country's huge forests and their "significant capacity" to absorb carbon dioxide and produce oxygen. The Kremlin is relying on the country's 800 million hectares to meet its emissions goals.

"We are taking the strongest and most-vigorous measures to conserve [our forests]," Putin noted, explaining that Russia has boosted funding for forest management, including the fight against illegal logging and wildfires, while also expanding reforestation areas.

By signing the document, Russia is joining more than 100 other countries in what is COP26’s first major agreement. According to the BBC, the countries that have agreed to sign the pledge, including Canada, Brazil, and the US, make up around 85% of the world's forests.

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