Online Talk on March 12: Climate Obstruction in Russia

The March edition of Online Talk focuses on climate obstruction in Russia with Marianna Poberezhskaya.

TaRC and the Russian Media Lab’s (University of Helsinki) co-operative initiative, Online Talks on Russian Media, rolls on!

In March, we will hear from Marianna Poberezhskaya (Nottingham Trent University) who presents her research on Climate obstruction in Russia: Surviving resource dependent economy, authoritarian regime and disappearing civil society.

Russia is one of the world’s largest fossil fuel producer-exporters and the fourth-largest global emitter of greenhouse gases. It is widely regarded as a laggard in its climate policy commitments and has been a reluctant participant in global climate negotiations.

Despite a long tradition of climate research dating back to the Soviet era, policy action on climate change has faced opposition from a range of actors who have sought to obstruct or delay such action on economic, political, and ideological grounds.

Furthermore, being an authoritarian state Russia’s own political regime also contributes to climate obstruction. The current isolation of the country since its invasion of Ukraine appears to offer new opportunities for climate obstruction as the country finds itself excluded from the policy negotiations.

This talk will address the knowledge gap in the history of climate obstruction in Russia and offer a comprehensive analysis of the current key actors and institutions involved, including the largest fossil fuel companies, such as Rosneft and Gazprom; a powerful industry association, the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs (RUIE); the networks of bureaucratic actors centered on the Ministry for Energy; and government elites, starting at the very top with a look at President Vladimir Putin.

Speaker bio:

Marianna Poberezhskaya, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor in Politics and International Relations at Nottingham Trent University, UK. Poberezhskaya’s research interests include environmental communication, climate skepticism, geoengineering, and national climate governance.

Since 2009, she has been studying authoritarian regimes and their approaches to climate change discourse, including extensive research on official and media climate discourses in Russia. She is currently involved in research projects in Central Asia and Jordan.

Her recent publications include ‘Soviet and Russian perspectives on geoengineering and climate management’ (with J.D. Oldfield) in WIREs Climate Change (2023), ‘Russian climate scepticism: an understudied case’ (with T. Ashe) in Climatic Change (2022), ‘Reconciling climate change leadership with resource nationalism and regional vulnerabilities: a case-study of Kazakhstan’ (with N. Danilova) in Environmental Politics (2021).

Event info:

This Online Talk will be held on Zoom on Tuesday 12 March from 12:00 to 13:30 (Helsinki time, GMT+2). It will be moderated by Olga Dovbysh (University of Helsinki).

If you wish to participate and receive emails with updates about the future online talks, please leave your contact information here by Monday 11 March at noon (Helsinki time). If you have already subscribed to the Online Talks mailing list, you don’t need to register again. You will receive further information via email.