Black Carbon Diesel Initiative in the Russian Arctic
Russian Language Content
For Russian language information on black carbon, please see our partner site hosted by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Russia.
Black carbon, also known as "soot," results from the incomplete combustion of organic matter such as fossil fuels and biomass. Black carbon causes significant environmental harm and impacts human health in the Arctic. When deposited on snow or ice, it reduces the reflection of sunlight, causing further warming and increasing the rate of melting.
The project will report results to both:
- The Arctic Council, through the Short Lived Climate Forcers and Contaminants (SLCFC) Project Steering Group (PSG) under the Arctic Council’s Arctic Contaminants Action Program (ACAP), and
- The U.S.-Russia Bilateral Presidential Commission’s Environment Working Group (EWG), with the Russian Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources as a partner.
Battelle Memorial Institute (Battelle), the Nordic Environmental Finance Corporation (NEFCO), Murmansk State Technical University, and WWF Russia have partnered with EPA to implement the project in the Russian Arctic.
EPA and its partners have also formed a Technical Steering Group of Russian, international, and U.S. experts to guide the project and to serve as an advisory body on inventories, pilot project design and related issues.
Mobile and stationary diesel engines are among the largest sources of black carbon emissions in the Arctic. Across the diesel sector, substantial black carbon reductions are possible. To address this challenge, EPA is leading the Black Carbon Diesel Initiative under the Arctic Black Carbon Initiative (ABCI). The ABCI also includes initiatives led by the U.S. Forest Service and the U.S. Department of Agriculture, with support from the U.S. Department of State.
- New! Presentations available from Transport and Clean Air, a December 2013 Circumpolar Workshop. This seminar allowed leading experts to share best practices on reducing emissions of particulates and black carbon from diesel sources in the Arctic.
EPA is engaging with partners from government agencies, U.S. Arctic and Russian universities and non-governmental organizations, Russian and Arctic stakeholders, and indigenous communities on a four-step project to reduce diesel black carbon emissions in the Russian Arctic through 2015.
Specifically, EPA and its partners will:
- Conduct initial scoping and assessment of primary sources of black carbon in the Russian Arctic,
- Develop a baseline emission inventory for black carbon from diesel sources,
- Implement targeted, on-the-ground demonstration projects for reducing black carbon from diesel, and
- Establish policy recommendations and financing options for reducing black carbon from diesel sources.
EPA's work in the ABCI focuses in the Russian Arctic, but the project includes broader collaboration to reduce diesel black carbon emissions across the Arctic.
- About Black Carbon
- Scoping and Assessment
- Emissions Inventory
- Demonstration Projects and Recommendations
Project Phase 3: Demonstration Projects
You will need Adobe Reader to view some of the files below. See EPA's PDF page to learn more.
As a next step, EPA and its partners are identifying and implementing up to three demonstration projects. These demonstration projects will reduce black carbon emissions in the Russian Arctic, and improve understanding of emission reduction opportunities in the Russian context.
To identify the best projects and technologies, EPA and its partners are considering feasibility, replicability, sustainability, leverage, measurement, local support and capacity, and information gathered during the earlier phases of this effort. EPA will work in conjunction with the Technical Steering Group.
Before project implementation, EPA and its partners convened "Transport and Clean Air," a Circumpolar Workshop [View Agenda (PDF) (2 pp, 453.8 K)] held in December 2013. This seminar allowed leading experts to share best practices on reducing emissions of particulates and black carbon from diesel sources in the Arctic. The following presentations are now available from the workshop:
- Health Effects of Particulates and Black Carbon (PDF) (7 pp, 807 K)
- Transport emission reduction in a big city: View from Moscow (PDF) (27 pp,4.82 M)
- Urban air quality and abatement measures in the city of Gothenburg, Sweden (PDF) (17 pp, 1.21M)
- Environmental Standards for Vehicles in the U.S. and Their Impact on BC Emissions (PDF) (12 pp, 403.8 K)
- Financing Options for Black Carbon Emissions Reduction Projects (PDF) (23 pp, 1M)
- U.S. Diesel Retrofit Program: Incentives to Reduce Large Emitters (PDF) (12 pp, 202.58 K)
- VERT Standards and Procedures for Retrofit to reduce Diesel Engine Emissions (PDF) (41 pp, 2.75 M)
- Fuel and Vehicle Technologies for Air Pollution Reduction (PDF) (22 pp, 2.07 M)
- Murmansk Experience in Selecting Low Emission Buses (PDF) (11 pp, 1.73 M)
Russian presentations from this workshop are available from the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Russia.
EPA is also working with Nordic Environmental Finance Corporation (NEFCO) through the Arctic Council and its Project Support Instrument to support this phase of the initiative.
Project Phase 4: Recommendations
Following the completion of the demonstration projects, EPA will work with its partners, including stakeholders in Russia, to develop recommendations for policy and financing. These recommendations will be based on the earlier phases of this initiative, including the Phase 3 activities.
To formulate the recommendations, EPA and its partners will analyze:
- Black carbon emissions scenarios,
- Mitigation options,
- Specific policy approaches, and
- Fuel supply systems.
EPA's recommendations will include financing options for diesel black carbon emissions reductions projects and other large-scale solutions. They will also include options for expanding the availability of ultra-low sulfur diesel in the Russian Arctic.
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EPA's work on the ABCI:
EPA's work with the Arctic Council: