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Greenhouse gas fluxes and mitigation potential for managed lands in the Russian Federation

Abstract

This work aims to assess the dynamics of net greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and removals, as well as analyse the mitigation potential for managed lands in Russia, the country’s contributions to global GHG fluxes and global mitigation in agriculture, forestry and other land use required under the goals of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change 21st Conference of the Parties (Paris Agreement). Russia is the fifth-largest GHG emitter in the world, yet information on its ecosystem-based emissions and related mitigation potential remains insufficient. In order to estimate annual GHG emissions and removals, the adapted methodologies and parameters of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) methodological reports were applied. Managed land in Russia exhibits a steady trend of increasing net GHG absorption from 1990 to 2016, reaching an absorption value of 553 Mt carbon dioxide (CO2-eq) in 2016 (compensating for about 4.6% of the current global net GHG emission from land use) from a net loss of 343 Mt CO2-eq in 1990 due to the decrease in forest harvesting rates and reduction in the organic and mineral fertilisation of croplands. The results obtained in our work are in accordance with the carbon fluxes (per hectare) of other countries, taking into account similarities and differences in climatic conditions. The total mitigation potential of managed land in Russia is estimated at about 545–940 Mt CO2-eq year−1, which may compensate for an additional 4.5–7.8% of current global net GHG emissions from land use. Major mitigation measures in Russia comprise sustainable land management activities, such as land protection from fires, insect outbreaks and other natural disturbances, the reduction of carbon losses due to harvesting and wood production, the replacement of existing extensive agricultural management with intense farming, the prevention of soil erosion, reforestation and reclamation activities. Our research demonstrates that implementing these activities can provide general insights into land mitigation strategies and affect land management in other countries, particularly in the former Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. On the global scale mitigation recommendations informed by our study include improved forest management, reforestation, cropland nutrient management and wetland restoration.

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Notes

  1. https://unfccc.int/process-and-meetings/transparency-and-reporting/reporting-and-review-under-the-convention/greenhouse-gas-inventories-annex-i-parties/national-inventory-submissions-2019

  2. Forest code of the Russian Federation 04.12.2006 № 200-FZ (ed. from 3 August 2018) (with changes and additional entry into force from 1 January 2009): http://www.consultant.ru/document/cons_doc_LAW_64299/ (in Russian). Accessed 3 July 2019

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  4. Customs statistic of foreign trade of the Russian Federation (2007–2016). Annual Digest: State Customs Committee, Moscow. (in Russian)

  5. State (national) report on the land state and land use of the Russian Federation (2004–2009). Rosnedvizhimost. FGUP «FCC Zemlya»: Moscow (In Russian); State (national) report on the land state and land use of the Russian Federation (2010–2017). FGUP «FCC Zemlya»: Moscow. (In Russian). https://rosreestr.ru/site/activity/gosudarstvennoe-upravlenie-v-sfere-ispolzovaniya-i-okhrany-zemel/gosudarstvennyy-monitoring-zemel/sostoyanie-zemel-rossii. Accessed 3 July 2019

  6. State (national) report of status and land use in Russian Federation in 2017. Ministry of Economic development of the Russian Federation, Federal Service for State Registration, Cadaster and Cartography (Rosreestr). Moscow (2018) (in Russian). https://rosreestr.ru/site/activity/gosudarstvennoe-upravlenie-v-sfere-ispolzovaniya-i-okhrany-zemel/gosudarstvennyy-monitoring-zemel/sostoyanie-zemel-rossii. Accessed 3 July 2019

  7. State (national) report on the land state and land use of the Russian Federation (2010–2017). FGUP «FCC Zemlya»: Moscow. (In Russian). https://rosreestr.ru/site/activity/gosudarstvennoe-upravlenie-v-sfere-ispolzovaniya-i-okhrany-zemel/gosudarstvennyy-monitoring-zemel/sostoyanie-zemel-rossii. Accessed 3 July 2019

  8. Russian Statistical Yearbooks (2004–2018). Statistic Digest: Rosstat, Moscow (in Russian) Access mode: http://www.gks.ru. Accessed 3 July 2019

  9. State (national) report on the land state and land use of the Russian Federation (2018). FGUP «FCC Zemlya»: Moscow. (In Russian). Access mode: https://rosreestr.ru/site/activity/gosudarstvennoe-upravlenie-v-sfere-ispolzovaniya-i-okhrany-zemel/gosudarstvennyy-monitoring-zemel/sostoyanie-zemel-rossii/

  10. https://unfccc.int/process-and-meetings/transparency-and-reporting/reporting-and-review-under-the-convention/greenhouse-gas-inventories-annex-i-parties/submissions/national-inventory-submissions-2018

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Romanovskaya, A.A., Korotkov, V.N., Polumieva, P.D. et al. Greenhouse gas fluxes and mitigation potential for managed lands in the Russian Federation. Mitig Adapt Strateg Glob Change 25, 661–687 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11027-019-09885-2

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Keywords

  • Greenhouse gases
  • Land use
  • Land-use change
  • Forestry
  • Agriculture
  • Mitigation
  • Climate change
  • Russian Federation