Ecology // Analysis

28 october 2016

We Live As If We Don’t See History


The UN has officially declared 2016 to be the hottest year in the history of mankind. This means that problems associated with ecology and the environment will inevitably ascend from secondary positions on the international agenda to among the leading ones. The ratification of the Paris Agreement by three of the most problematic players in this regard – the United States, China and India – signifies a revolutionary breakthrough. The work performed by environmental organizations is now more important now than ever. Alexander Likhotal, the president of the Green Cross International non-profit organization, shared his vision of the environmental problems the planet faces as well as issues involving the further development of mankind.

20 october 2016

After Paris: Countries’ Paths into the Low-Carbon Future

Igor Makarov PhD in Economics, Associate Professor of the World Economy Department, Academic Head of the World Economy Undergraduate Program at HSE- University, RIAC expert


It is not surprising therefore that both the expert and the academic communities continue to discuss the results of the Paris Conference. In particular, in August 2016, the British analytical center Chatham House published a report by John and Beth Mitchells “Paris Mismatches. The Impact of the COP21 Climate Change Negotiations on the Oil and Gas Industries.” The Mitchells’ report offers a well-structured explication of the consequences the agreement will have for two interconnected sectors which are of particular significance for Russia’s economy.

02 june 2016

Nuclear Waste Storage and Climate Change: What should we expect?

Olga Ulybina PhD, Post-doctoral Research Fellow WZB Berlin Social Science Center, Research Fellow Cambridge Central Asia Forum


Nuclear power is an energy source that could help to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions and reduce the scale of climate change by replacing carbon intensive coal and gas-fired power stations. However, with the production of nuclear energy comes the production of nuclear waste. The waste is produced by a wide variety of processes and can be stored in many different sites around the world. If climate change continues, we should expect more frequent extreme climate events and various environmental changes, which are likely to generate new safety risks for these nuclear waste storage facilities.

02 february 2016

Global Action against Climate Change: Time to Join Forces

Dmitriy Kiku PhD in Political Science, RIAC Expert


When the 21st Conference on Climate Change in Paris (COP21) and the 11th Conference of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol held from November 30 to December 11 last year approved the new comprehensive agreement covering the time period up until 2020 in international cooperation on climate, it became clear that states have come to the understanding that urgent action is needed to reduce climate change-related threats and stabilize concentrations of greenhouse gases.

27 november 2015

Russia at COP21: An Opportunity to Reengage with the West

Alina Yablokova MA in International Studies and Diplomacy, Political Risk Analyst


On the 30th of November 2015 world leaders will gather in Paris to forge a new international climate change agreement. The goal of the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP21) taking place in the French capital is to reach a universal commitment to maintain the global increase in average temperature under 2C above pre-industrial level. Most scientists have so far agreed that this is the critical threshold which, if exceeded, would lead to irrevocable catastrophic consequences for our planet.

08 september 2015

The El Niño Climate Anomaly – Impact on Food Security in the Asia-Pacific Region

Thomas Lines Consultant in Trade and Food Security, and Director of “Green House”


A connection between ocean temperatures and food supplies may seem remote, but when the warm waters of ‘El Niño’ appear in the Eastern Pacific, half of the world has cause to worry. This ‘Little Boy’ – named after the Christ child in Spanish – can affect crops and food supplies over a wide arc from Brazil through Australia and the Philippines to East Africa. Nevertheless, although a warmer Pacific affects the climate in many places, the complexity of the phenomenon makes accurate predictions difficult.

19 june 2015

Meeting on Climate in Bonn Failed to Make the Air Cleaner

Igor Makarov PhD in Economics, Associate Professor of the World Economy Department, Academic Head of the World Economy Undergraduate Program at HSE- University, RIAC expert


The 42nd session of the Subsidiary Bodies of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change took place in Bonn in early June 2015. The aim of the session was to prepare a climate agreement that could be signed in Paris in December 2015. The meeting failed to make any substantial progress. Participant countries found it difficult to achieve compromises on a number of fundamental issues, and negotiators still have much to do to meet the deadline of the Paris meeting.

05 june 2015

The Growing Need for Environmental and Disaster-Driven Diplomacy

Robin Seemangal Journalist for The New York Observer, Founder/Director of Deepcor Media Former communications director of the Himalayan Consensus - an NGO based in Kathmandu, Nepal


Natural disasters and environmental catastrophe can have a profound effect on the geopolitical landscape and create a diplomatic quagmire for local governments as well as surrounding superpowers. Among superpowers like the United States, China and Russia, the unique construct of disaster diplomacy can be a welcomed opportunity to display soft power but can also expose the true intentions and expectation that follows humanitarian aid and economic assistance following an environmental crisis.

17 april 2015

Climate Change & Social Media: Redefining ‘Realism’

Rachel Cunningham A.B. Political Science, University of Chicago, MA candidate at the University of Western Australia


Climate change and environmental disasters are already challenging the traditional paradigms of constructivism, liberalism and realism. With respect to Dr. Istomin, Ukraine is the least of our worries. Climate action demands a new call for international cooperation and effective use of diplomacy to protect lives, global economies, environments, resources and peace.

31 march 2015

Building Resilience to Resource Risks Is Critical to Global Stability


Recently the Earth Security Group launched its annual Earth Security Index 2015 report, which outlines the resource security risks that countries and multinational companies face from a deepening of economic and political inter-dependencies at regional and global levels. Meanwhile the RIAC team asked Alejandro Litovsky, CEO of the Earth Security group based in London, UK, to share his unique insights into the topic, the future scenarios for how global sustainability risks will shape regional stability and international relations in many emerging economies and what this means for governments and investors.

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