RUSSIA WILL GAIN IF IT RATIFIES KYOTO PROTOCOL?

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MOSCOW, October 22 (RIA Novosti) - "Russia won't lose if it ratifies the Kyoto protocol. The gain depends on the timely adoption of well-weighted, coordinated decisions to organize the implementation of commitments inside of the country," Rosgidromet head Alexander Bedritsky said on Friday speaking in the State Duma.

He said the Russian quota on emissions to the atmosphere of greenhouse gases should not be sold massively, and the rights to its distribution should not be given to everyone, and proposed leaving it as a strategic reserve for the future economic growth.

In his words, there is yet no exact forecast of Russia's actual emissions in 2008-2012, that's why speaking about trading in quotas is "senseless." The Russian quota is the positive difference between the 1990 emissions and the total level of actual emissions, said Mr. Bedritsky.

"Most forecasts show that this difference will exist, but this quota should be referred to the strategic reserve for the future economic growth, and not included in trade," he said.

Mr. Bedritsky said that trade in units of emission reductions, which may be received as a result of realization of projects to reduce emissions inside of the country, may become an economic impetus.

"Receiving financial gains is a secondary important point in regard to the main function of the protocol as the international environment protection document," said Mr. Bedritsky.

In his words, additional expenditures of the budget will be required to fulfill commitments to create systems to monitor emissions and absorb greenhouse gases, as well as to create a register of emission unit movement.

Expenditures to this effect are estimated, in his words, at 60 million rubles (about $2 million), to create the necessary system to fulfill commitments on the protocol and 20 million rubles annually to maintain it. Russia's contributions to the Kyoto protocol budget are assessed at $150,000.

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