RUSAL (486 Hong Kong, RUAL Moscow Exchange), one of the largest aluminium producers in the world, will plant 500 thousand trees in the Irkutsk region, as part of the Company’s climate strategy on greenhouse gas absorption.
During the St. Petersburg Economic Forum, RUSAL, the Federal Forestry Agency and the Government of the Irkutsk region signed an agreement to implement voluntary eco-friendly projects, which include planting at least 500 thousand trees on an area of 125 hectares in the Kirovskoye forestry.
These initiatives are part of a large-scale project to restore and protect forests, which the Company has been implementing as part of a comprehensive program to reduce its carbon footprint. This program, called “Green Million”, involves planting more than 1 million trees in various Russian regions and organizing activities to protect forests from fires and illegal logging.
Such an initiative contributes to the Company’s prior efforts where it has already planted 500 thousand trees in the Krasnoyarsk territory. In addition, as part of the program, RUSAL will be supervising 500 thousand hectares of reserve forests of the Lower Yenisei Forestry in the coming years. For the first time, forest protection in this territory will be carried out by means of aviation.
“RUSAL pays great attention to environmental issues. Our carbon footprint is one of the lowest in the industry — for example, our ALLOW aluminium is produced using hydropower, which means it has minimal environmental impact. We constantly strive to further reduce our carbon footprint, which is one of our main project goals on technological modernization. Planting trees is an important project of an unprecedented scale in Russia and is aimed at offsetting the greenhouse gas emissions that make up the primary aluminium carbon footprint”, commented Evgenii Nikitin, CEO of RUSAL.
RUSAL’s program on the restoration and protection of forests contributes to the UN’s target towards its sustainable development goal. By 2030, they aim to restore 350 million hectares of forests around the world as part of their fight against climate change. It is important to note that, although global deforestation has almost halved since the early 1990s, the loss of individual trees has increased by 50% in recent years. Newly planted trees take up to 13 years to reach the maximum level of CO2 absorption, therefore the ongoing protection of existing trees and the planting of new forests is essential to reduce the level of greenhouse gases.