RUSAL issues over 1.3 million inaugural carbon units

7 June 2024

RUSAL, one of the world's largest aluminium producers, has issued 1,351,056 carbon units in Russia’s national carbon registry, marking the Company’s entry into the country’s voluntary carbon market, where RUSAL now accounts for more than 85% of the entire volume. The move also underscores RUSAL’s commitment to reducing its environmental footprint and the Company’s leadership in driving the sustainability agenda.

The registered carbon units represent verified emissions cuts from the country’s first forest carbon offset project, implemented in the context of the Paris Agreement. The project was launched by RUSAL in 2019 and aims at forest protection. Under the project, the Company voluntarily manages over half a million hectares – equivalent to the size of two Luxembourgs – of pristine Siberian forestland that is most prone to wildfires.

RUSAL organises continuous aerial monitoring of forests, personnel trainings and equips rapid response firefighting teams, thereby significantly reducing the number of wildfires. The projected greenhouse gas emission reductions under the project through 2033 exceed 5 million tonnes of CO2 equivalent. Since the start of the project in 2019, the Company has cut over 1.3 million tonnes of CO2, the approximate equivalent of taking 500 thousand cars off the road.

The results of the RUSAL’s carbon offset project were verified and confirmed by the Saint Petersburg Forestry Research Institute. RUSAL can use the units to offset its own carbon footprint across its production facilities or to sell them to others within the carbon market.

“This marks a significant milestone for both RUSAL and the national carbon units market, raising the benchmark and reinforcing RUSAL’s position as a leader in sustainability. Preventing deforestation and using vast forestlands to offset carbon footprint stand as key priorities on our path to becoming net-zero by 2050. We are also proud of pioneering the country’s first forest carbon offset project. Currently, we are actively developing a series of engineered solutions to complement this nature-based initiative to combat climate change,” said Elena Myakotnikova, RUSAL Chief Sustainability Officer.

Incremental environmental action is at the core of RUSAL’s strategy to achieve its 2050 net-zero target while contributing to sustainable development and accelerating transition to a greener economy. RUSAL is the largest producer of low-carbon aluminium and ranks amongst the cleanest industrial giants globally, utilising renewable hydropower to produce over 95% of its metal.

Russia established its own system for emissions trading in 2022. Until now, the total volume of carbon units registered in the country’s voluntary carbon market stood below 200 thousand. RUSAL now accounts for 85% of all carbon units issued in the country.