As unsettling as it may seem, the United States and Russia are using climate change mitigation talks as a means to collaborate with one another despite escalating tensions. Relations between the United States and Russia are rife with election tampering accusations, cyberattacks and economic sanctions against one another. Some point to Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea in 2014 as the starting point for declining ties between Washington and Moscow.

Recently, a presidential summit took place in Geneva, Switzerland. The United States’ president, Joe Biden, and Russia’s President, Vladimir Putin do not appear to have any substantial common interests. At least, they were able to agree upon a joint statement which establishes armed conflict risk reductions and shared goals against nuclear warfare. The conclusion of the new U.S.-Russia Presidential Joint Statement on Strategic Stability extension is essentially that a nuclear war is a lose-lose situation and therefore, must not be fought.

united states and russian flag against UNFCCC logo
Russian and United States Flags against UNFCCC logo

Climate change represents the first sign of cooperation between the two countries. Inappropriate as it may be, strengthening ties between the nations may depend on closely collaborating to mitigate their environmental based threats. Though Russia and the U.S are part of the Paris Climate Agreement, which is a legally binding document aimed at limiting greenhouse emissions, both nations are among the world’s top producers of coal and petroleum fumes (the U.S is second and the Russia Federation is fourth place).

A meeting between John Kerry, a United States climate delegate met with Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov may mark a shift in U.S and Russian industrial economics. Climate change represents a threat to Russia’s permafrost, which could eventuate changes in snow depth and alter its Arctic wildlife ecosystems. The United States’ Alaskan tundra could likewise face dramatic changes in its ice and coastal regions. In either case, flooding, increased precipitation and habitat loss are unfavorable outcomes. Though, little news have been published about the what’s been discussed in these climate change

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