Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and climate change have a common root – both threats stem from humanity’s dependence on fossil fuels, said leading Ukrainian climatologist Svitlana Krakovska.
“I started thinking about the parallels between climate change and this war and it’s clear that the roots of both of these threats to humanity lie in fossil fuels,” Krakovska told the Guardian.
Krakovska said Russia sells oil, gas and coal to countries around the world and uses the proceeds to buy weapons. The same resources used by countries are responsible for global warming.
In a separate interview with CNBC, the veteran climatologist said that while the real cause of the war may not be the result of fossil fuels, it was still the “enabler,” without which war would not be possible. .
Before the start of the war, Krakovska led a delegation of 11 Ukrainian scientists working on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report on climate change, which was due to be released on February 28.
The IPCC report, which comprehensively lists the consequences of global warming, indicates that nearly half of the world’s population is vulnerable to disasters from the burning of fossil fuels.
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It was only after Russia launched an unprovoked attack on Ukraine that European governments tried to reduce their dependence on Russian oil and gas. Currently, the EU, which imports 40% of its gas supply from Russia, is working on a plan to get more electricity from renewable sources and boost energy efficiency measures. It also plans to build liquefied natural gas terminals to receive gas from other countries.
US President Joe Biden has also imposed a ban on the import of Russian oil, liquefied natural gas and coal into the United States, a move the president said would deal a “powerful blow to Putin’s war machine”. .
Biden said the United States plans to work with European governments to develop a long-term plan to phase out Russian oil and gas imports.
Meanwhile, a report by the Transport and Environment campaign group found that the Russian military was benefiting from the $285 million in oil payments made every day by European countries, CNBC reported.
There’s no denying that a significant portion of Russia’s revenue comes from the export of oil and gas, Jonathan Elkind, an energy policy expert at Columbia University, told The Guardian.
“The conclusion should be that the sooner we stop our reliance on fossil fuels, the better the world will be for us and our children,” Krakovska said.