Renewable Energy Booming Around The World – As Russia’s Economy Collapses

National Economy

The population of the Russian Federation is approximately 143.44 million people[1]. In 2021, 100% of the people in this Eurasian country had access to electricity[2].

In 2022, Russia was ranked 11th in the world in gross domestic product (GDP)[3]. The country’s economy was dependent on the export[4] of crude oil, refined petroleum, natural gas, gold, coal, wheat, iron, frozen fish, nickel, and military equipment.

Environmental Policies

In 2016, Russia signed the Paris Climate Agreement, committing to a 25% to 30% reduction in greenhouse gases by 2030 compared to 1990 levels[5]

In 2017, Russian President, Vladimir Putin stated[6] volcanic eruptions were responsible for more greenhouse gas emissions than the use of fossil fuels .”

In 2018, President, Vladimir Putin stated[7] climate change was caused by changes of global character, cosmic changes, some invisible moves in the galaxy.”

Power Generation Capabilities

In 2021, utilities used natural gas (42.0 %), nuclear energy (20.0 %), renewable energy (20.0 %), coal (17.8 %), and oil (0.7 %) to generate electricity in Russia[8]. Hydropower is the dominant type of renewable energy used to generate electricity in Russia.

Recent renewable energy projects in Russia include:

  • 201 MW Wind Project – In December 2021, Italian utility, Enel commissioned the Kolskaya wind project near the city Murmansk in the northern region of the country.
  • 20 MW Solar Project – In May 2021, Russian energy company, Lukoil commissioned a solar project at an oil refinery in Volgograd in the southern region of the country.


Oil was first discovered in Russia in 1929[9]. In 2021, Russia was the 2nd largest crude oil[10] and the 11th largest natural gas[11] exporting the country in the world.

The export of coal, oil, and natural gas has been the cornerstone of Russia’s economy. In 2020, Russia exported[12] U.S. $74.4 Billion in crude oil, U.S. $48 Billion in refined petroleum, U.S. $19.7 Billion in natural gas, and U.S.$14.5 Billion in coal.

On 24 February 2022, Russia invaded Ukraine, prompting the European Union, United Kingdom, United States, Canada, Japan, South Korea, Australia, and New Zealand to place economic sanctions on Russian imports and exports. As a result, the global prices for crude oil and natural gas increased by over 50% from May 2021 to May 2022.

Russia has found it nearly impossible to find new fossil fuel export markets for the following reasons:

  1. Russia’s natural exports by pipeline to the European Union and United Kingdom[13] declined by approximately 40% during the first seven month of 2022, compared with the same period in 2021.
  2. In 2021, approximately 85% of Russia’s natural gas was exported by pipeline[14]. Russia does export natural gas by pipeline to the People’s Republic of China (PRC). However, there is limited pipeline capacity for Russia to increase natural gas exports to the PRC.
  3. In 2021, Russia exported over 50% its crude oil and condensate to countries[15] which have now placed embargos on Russian exports.
  4. Russia has very few large tankers to transport oil for export. Companies in nations which have placed embargos on Russia, dominate the world’s large tanker fleet[16]. As a result, Russia has very few options to export oil or liquified natural gas by tanker.

The European Union, United Kingdom, United States, Canada, Japan, South Korea, Australia, and New Zealand economic sanctions are devastating Russia’s fossil fuel industry, and the nation’s economy. Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine has resulted in deaths of tens of thousands of Russian and Ukraine soldiers in addition to thousands of Ukrainian civilians.

President Putin has shown little concern over climate changed or the unspeakable devastation and death caused by Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine. Ironically, demand for renewable energy is booming around the world, as Russia’s fossil fuel industry and the nation’s economy collapses.

Jack Kerfoot

Website – “Our Energy Conundrum”



Jack Kerfoot is a scientist, energy expert, and author of the book FUELING AMERICA, An Insider’s Journey and articles for The Hill, one of the largest independent political news sites in the United States. He has been interviewed on over 100 radio and television stations from New York City to Los Angeles on numerous energy related topics.

[1] Country Comparison: Russia/Ukraine,

[2] World Bank, Access To Electricity (% Population) – Russia

[3] Gross Domestic Product By Country 2022 – Worldometer

[4] The Observatory of Economic Complexity (OEC) – Russia

[5] Carbon Brief – “2015: Tracking Country Climate Pledges”

[6] The Moscow Times, “How Putin’s Views on Climate Change Have Changed Over The Years,” September 7, 2021

[7] The Moscow Times, “How Putin’s Views on Climate Change Have Changed Over The Years,” September 7, 2021

[8] Our World In Data, Russia: Energy Country Profile by Hanna Ritchie and Max Roser

[9] The Formation and Evolution of the Soviet Union’s Oil and Gas Dependence by Sergi Ermolaev, March 29, 2017

[10] Crude Oil Exports By Country 2021 by Daniel Workman

[11] Natural Gas Exports By Country 2021 by Daniel Workman

[12] The Observatory of Economic Complexity (OEC) – Russia Exports

[13] “Russia’s Natural Gas Exports to Europe” by U.S. Energy Information Agency, August 9, 2022

[14] “Russia’s Energy Overview – 2021 by U.S. Energy Information Agency, January 27, 2023

[15] “Russia Matters” by Harvard Kennedy School Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, March 25, 2022

[16] “Ten Largest Oil Tanker Companies in the World” by Marine Digital.

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