On 27 August 2017, Tatiana Lanshina, Network Coordinator for SDSN Youth in Russia, gave a lecture on SDG7 – Affordable and Clean Energy. The lecture was a part of the School of Sustainable Development session organized by the SDSN Youth member organization – OpenShkola (Open School of Sustainable Development) – at the ecological festival “Day of Leopard” in Moscow. The festival was devoted to drawing public attention to leopard preservation and popularization of ecological volunteer work.
According to Tatiana, energy in Russia is quite cheap and clean. For instance, electric power in Russia is cheaper than in most European countries. Also, according to the World Bank data, dirty coal power generation comprises for less than 20 percent of the total power generation in Russia, whereas in such developed countries as Germany and the U.S. – for about 40 percent, in such developing countries as China and India – for more than 70 percent.
Still, if we take into account not only the formulation of the SDG7 itself, but also the targets and indicators that stand behind it, we come to a conclusion that this goal implies not only providing access to affordable and clean energy, but also active deployment of renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies, as well as international cooperation in these spheres. In renewable energy and energy efficiency Russia is falling behind other countries. According to the Russia’s Federal State Statistics Service, in 2016, Russia generated only 0.21 percent of its total electric power from renewable energy sources (RES), except for large hydropower plants. For the whole world, according to REN21, the value of this indicator was 7.9 percent, including 4 percent of wind power generation and 1.5 percent of solar PV power generation. Recent years have seen a steady decline in the energy intensity of the Russian GDP; still, in comparison to other countries, Russia remains one of the most energy-intensive countries.
Thus, Russia is quite a way from the SDG7 implementation, and it needs new measures to achieve this goal by 2030. In particular, it needs more ambitious plans for RES and energy efficiency development and additional instruments of state support for their successful realization.
Tatiana Lanshina is a Research Associate at the Centre for Economic Modelling of Energy and Ecology in the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (RANEPA), Moscow. She is also a Network Coordinator for SDSN Youth in Russia. Her research is mainly focused on the economics of renewable energy and on the transition to sustainable energy solutions. Tatiana Lanhina is the author of more than 50 articles in scientific journals and media.