In Moscow, across all sectors of the economy, there is a significant amount of work taking place to drive down greenhouse gas emissions. The city of Moscow has been calculating the volume of greenhouse gas emissions since 2007. The base year selected to make further estimations of greenhouse gas emissions was 1990 (under the Presidential Decree of the Russian Federation № 752, 30.09.2013 “On greenhouse gas emissions”).

According to the results of the inventory held in 2016, greenhouse gas emissions data in the city of Moscow was as follows: Area 1 ‒ 59,059,034 tons СО2 equivalent. Area 2 ‒ 3,609,079 tons СО2 equivalent. Area 3 ‒ 20,293,820 tons СО2 equivalent.

Calculations show that Moscow has currently already achieved a reduction of over 20% of greenhouse gas emissions when compared with the base of 1990.

Moreover, the city of Moscow regularly evaluates how different sectors of the economy may impact on climate change adaptation. The city’s own plans, and measures to combat greenhouse gas emission, are revised and adjusted on the basis of the results obtained by the evaluation process.

Since 2013 Moscow has implemented the biggest landscaping programme in the city, called “Million Trees”. The aim of the programme is the growth of green spaces in the city and the creation of a pleasant urban environment. The environmental effects of the programme include an increase in the proportion of green spaces, reduction in greenhouse gas emissions through increasing their natural absorption, and adaptation to climate change by regulating the microclimate in courtyard spaces.

The uniqueness of the programme lies in involving citizens in the process of developing urban spaces. People can choose a particular place and a particular type of a plant. Moreover, the plant species that citizens can choose from have scientific backing and are adapted to the Moscow climate and the urban environment.

What is the innovation / policy / project / technology? How does it work?

The decision-making process takes place via a special internet platform called “Active Citizen”. The voting process has two stages. In the first stage, citizens vote on whether to landscape their courtyard, after which specialists assess the possibility of planting new trees and bushes.

In the second stage, citizens choose specific tree and shrub species to plant. Citizens can choose from those plant species which are resistant to the impact of the urban environment. A special booklet containing greenery recommended for planting in courtyard areas was created as part of the project. The booklet is available on the official website of the Moscow Department of Natural Resource Management and Environmental Protection (in the section “Ecology” → “Green spaces of Moscow”).

Planting is carried out through the spring and autumn seasons (the list of locations where planting is planned is posted on the official website of the Moscow Department of Natural Resource Management and Environmental Protection (in the section “Services and feedback” → “Million Trees” project).

As part of the planting events, a large number of environmental education events are also held, such as master classes for students, and environmental holidays, aimed at educating children and teenagers about the environment, including them in caring for green spaces.

What are the CO2 reduction goals/achievements?

Since the beginning of the “Million Trees” project in Moscow:

– 15,300 courtyard territories have been greened;

– over 90,400 trees and 1.8 million bushes have been planted;

– over 1.5 million citizens have taken part in the voting process;

– over 11,000trees and 300,000bushes were planted in 2017.

The average volume of СО2 equivalent emissions sequestration by one tree is about 20 kg. The total volume of СО2 equivalent emissions sequestration over the period from 2013 to 2017 is almost 2 million tons СО2 equivalent.

Next step:

As part of continuing “Million Trees”, the Moscow Department of Natural Resource Management and Environmental Protection has already received a number of requests from Moscow social organisations for 2018. It is planned to green 281 areas connected with a social use, planting 1,500 trees and 50,000 bushes there during the spring season. There will be a voting procedure among citizens in which they will able to choose which tree and shrub species will be planted in the city’s courtyards.

Links for further information:

  • Environmental
  • Health
  • Social
Key Impact
Reduction in greenhouse gas emissions and adaptation to climate change.
Emissions Reduction
Taking into account that 1 tree absorbs 20 kg of СО2 equivalent emissions it can be concluded that the total volume of СО2 equivalent emissions sequestration by green spaces is about 0.5 million tons.
Initial Investments
The project is being implemented at the expense of budgetary financing. Since the beginning, the project’s budget has been made up of about 3 billion rubles.
Financial Savings
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