Russian war against Ukraine worsens climate crisis, study shows

June 18,2024 202
Russian war against Ukraine worsens climate crisis, study shows

Russia’s war against Ukraine is accelerating the global climate crisis, writes The Guardian, citing an updated assessment by the Greenhouse Gas Accounting for War Initiative.

The climate cost of the first two years of Russia’s war on Ukraine was greater than the annual greenhouse gas emissions generated individually by 175 countries, exacerbating the global climate emergency in addition to the mounting death toll and widespread destruction,” the article states.

Russia’s invasion has led to the emission of at least 175 million tons of carbon dioxide equivalent due to increased emissions during direct combat, wildfires, flight diversions, forced migration, and emissions caused by military attacks on fossil fuel infrastructure. “As well as the future carbon cost of reconstruction,” analysts added.

“The analysis is the most up-to-date and thorough snapshot we have of the climate consequences of Russia’s invasion, helping to lift the fog of war that exists also when it comes to the environmental costs of conflict,” said Ruslan Strilets, the minister of environmental protection and natural resources of Ukraine. “It will be an essential plank in the reparations case we are building against Russia.”

Russia faces a climate compensation bill of US$32 billion, covering damage done in the first 24 months of the war. “The UN general assembly has said that Russia should compensate Ukraine for the war, leading the Council of Europe to establish a registry of damage, which will include climate emissions. Frozen Russian assets could be used to settle the costs,” the article concludes.

Cover: Muhammed Enes Yildirim/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

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