For almost two years the full-scale invasion of russia into Ukraine has been causing immense human suffering and loss of life. This war remains equally destructive for the environment, in turn affecting public health, ecosystems, food, and energy security as well as the climate; its consequences will be felt in Ukraine and beyond for decades to come.
The war in Ukraine has highlighted the transboundary and interlinked character of the environment, peace and security. This is clearly demonstrated by the ongoing radiation risks resulting from the unprecedented occupation of nuclear facilities, from how it has exacerbated global fossil energy insecurity, and from the war’s consequences for food exports and for the climate.


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Center for Environmental Initiatives Ecoaction is a Ukrainian civil society organization that unites efforts of experts and activists in a joint struggle to protect the environment. We advocate for energy efficiency, renewable energy, countering climate change, clean air for all, and sustainable development of agriculture in Ukraine since our founding in 2017. Ecoaction has been monitoring cases of potential negative environmental damage caused by russian aggression since February 24 2022, following the start of russia’s full-scale war against Ukraine.

Even though the war still rages on, we advocate for the basic principles of the green post-war reconstruction that would ensure sustainable economic and community development.

Our activities help us unite active citizens, influence decision makers and encourage them to conduct more environmentally friendly government policy.

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  • The revision of the nationally determined contribution (NDC) to the Paris Climate Agreement and setting a more ambitious goal.
  • In cooperation with other NGOs pushed for the rise of the carbon tax rate, resulting in it tripling from 10 to 30 UAH per ton of CO2.
  • Successful advocacy for a 2035 coal phase-out date in electricity generation which has been announced by the Ukrainian government in 2021 and reconfirmed in 2023
  • Implementing first successful campaign for the just transformation of coal mining regions in Ukraine.
  • Advocated to increase financial state aid to the minimum of 1% of state and local budgets for the implementation of energy-efficient measures by the population.
  • Partial adaptation of the EU Nitrates Directive in Ukraine with further identification of areas vulnerable to nitrates pollution and laying out rules for sustainable farming.
  • Passing “The amendments to Certain Laws of Ukraine Regarding Restoration and “Green” Transformation of the Energy System of Ukraine” that provided new mechanisms for the development of distributed RES generation such as net billing.
  • Successful advocacy for “green” international energy aid for Ukrainian municipalities.



Ahead of COP28 Ecoaction presented a Position with the vision of the decisions that must be adopted at the international and national level in Ukraine to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement – Ecoaction’s Position on the Priorities of Climate Policy in Ukraine and the world before the UN Climate Change Conference (COP28).

  1. Phasing out fossil fuels.

During last year’s Conference of the Parties (COP27), a proposal to phase out fossil fuels received the support of more than 80 countries, but countries rich in oil and gas opposed such an initiative. And then at the G20 summit in September 2023 agreed to triple the world’s renewable energy capacity by 2030 while failing to reach an agreement on phasing out fossil fuels and reducing emissions. This year it is important the Parties approve the phase out of fossil fuels as the main way to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement and define the time frame for the transformation and the renunciation of fossil fuel subsidies

  1. Settlement of liability for climate damage from international armed conflicts.

According to calculations, direct and indirect emissions of GHG from military operations may amount to about 5.5% of global emissions. Still, they are still optional for reporting and reducing under the Paris Agreement. We consider it important to start discussions to work out a solution regarding responsibility for emissions related to international armed conflicts. At the same time, we consider it inadmissible to continue the inclusion of emissions (not related to military operations) from the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine (the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and other temporarily occupied territories) to the emissions inventory of the russian federation.

  1. Climate justice: adequate climate finance to countries that need it.

120 developing countries are responsible for less than 20% of the global carbon dioxide emissions that have caused the climate crisis. However, the populations of these countries often suffer the most devastating effects of climate change. One of the attempts to solve this problem was the creation of the Loss and Damage Fund following the results of COP27. Regardless of its current capabilities, Ukraine should support the global call to accelerate the resolution of the issue of climate justice by streamlining the activities of the Loss and Damage Fund

  1. Ecosystems and biodiversity preservation

Within Global Stocktake (GST) framework, the Parties should strengthen joint actions to address climate change and biodiversity protection, in particular by better integrating these actions into their updated national climate goals, including nationally determined contributions, long-term strategies and adaptation strategies. Harmonization of the climate goals with the goals for biodiversity preservation, which are provided for by the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework, is also an important task for the UNFCCC Parties.


Regarding the Priorities of Ukraine’s Climate Policy

  1. Climate neutrality by 2050

On 23 June 2022, Ukraine received the status of a candidate for EU membership, which provides for the implementation of European legislation, including the European Green Deal, which aims to achieve climate neutrality on the European continent by 2050. Therefore, taking into account the commitments undertaken, Ukraine must officially approve the course for climate neutrality by 2050.

  1. Climate-friendly reconstruction of infrastructure and economy

Ukraine has the opportunity to become a model of sustainable climate-friendly reconstruction with the best approaches and technologies of the 21st century. This is important because, according to calculations, a significant part of the GHG emissions associated with the war will occur during reconstruction. Therefore, it is necessary to introduce mechanisms that would ensure climate-neutral reconstruction, in particular, by introducing new energy efficiency standards for buildings. In addition, the reconstruction planning, as well as direct actions to rebuild the infrastructure of settlements, take into account climatic aspects, in particular in the context of adaptation.

  1. Strengthening Ukraine’s participation in global climate initiatives

During COP28, Ukraine needs once again to emphasize its readiness to phase out coal in energy by 2035 and ensure a phase-out in a fair way; improve national legislation for the successful implementation of the approved Plan to reduce methane emissions; present a clear plan that would demonstrate readiness to implement the provisions of the Declaration on Forests and Land Use; join the BOGA countries, which is an international coalition of governments and partners working together to promote the phasing out of oil and gas production; develop and approve a national strategy and action plan for biodiversity preservation until 2030 within the next 1–2 years.

  1. Carbon markets

During the negotiations, Ukraine should not support initiatives that call into question the transparency of monitoring under Article 6 and any initiatives that would allow the transfer of emission reduction units from past periods. Ukraine’s position regarding market-based bilateral instruments within the framework of Article 6 of the Paris Agreement must meet the criteria for additionality and the prevention of double accounting of emission reduction units.

  1. Involvement in the development of climate policy

During the next year, Ukraine must develop a new Nationally Determined Contribution until 2035, as well as adopt a National Energy and Climate Plan. In the framework of their development, it is important to ensure access and take into account the proposals of all interested parties, including civil society and representatives of local authorities.

  1. Issues related to increasing export potential

In its pursuit of climate goals, Ukraine should not concentrate efforts and investments on the development of expensive nuclear energy capacities that would generate energy in the distant future. Instead, the focus should be on the development of decentralized renewable energy sources.

04.12.23, Climate Damage of Russia’s war in Ukraine and the knowledge gap on conflict and military emissions 18:30-20:00 local UAE time / 15:30 – 17;00, SE Room 2 (173 pax)

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has highlighted the scale of emissions resulting from conflicts and the historic lack of attention on armed conflicts as an emissions source, and their ability to influence emissions extra-territorially. At COP27, Ukraine presented an initial estimate of the GHG emissions resulting from the first seven months of the invasion, which totalled to at least 100 MtCO2e. At SB58, the emissions from 12 months of war were estimated to be 119 MtCO2e, the equivalent to a country like Belgium over the same period of time. At this event, speakers from the Initiative on GHG Accounting of War and a representative from Ukraine’s Government will reflect on the impact of the war with updated research on the emissions to date.

Read more about the research and watch the recording of the event here.

6.12.23 Sustainable and climate-friendly reconstruction of built environment after conflicts and disasters, 10:00 – 12:00 local UAE time / 7:00 – 9:00 CET, Ukrainian Pavilion

Estimates by the World Bank suggest that Ukraine’s recovery will cost more than USD 400 billion if the build back better principle is applied. However, what does building back better mean from sustainability and climate perspectives? In this panel discussion, international and Ukrainian experts will discuss frameworks, technologies, policies and practical steps toward a sustainable reconstruction of infrastructure and built environment.

Read more here

10.12.23 War on Environment: Protecting Dams and Nuclear Power Plants 14:30 – 15:30 local UAE time / 11:30 – 12:20 CET, Ukrainian Pavilion

Russian occupation of Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant (ZNPP) and the destruction of the dam of the Kakhovka hydroelectric power plant have demonstrated that an armed conflict, perceived by some as “local”, may have truly international consequences for the climate and the environment. Experience from Ukraine raises questions of global importance – how well is critical nuclear and hydroelectric infrastructure actually protected in times of armed conflicts and what can be done right now to minimise the risks of catastrophes like Kakhovka?

Read more here

Report ‘Climate damage caused by russia’s war in Ukraine’

The war in Ukraine has caused extensive devastation, including the destruction or damage of homes, schools, hospitals, and other critical public facilities, leaving citizens without essential resources such as water, electricity, and healthcare. The war has also led to significant environmental damage and had a detrimental impact on the global climate, resulting in the release of significant amounts of carbon dioxide and other GHG into the atmosphere.

The report “Climate damage caused by russia’s war in Ukraine” concludes that GHG emissions attributable to twelve months of the war totalled to 120 million tCO2 e. This is equivalent to the total GHG emissions produced over the same period in a country like Belgium. Despite this, emissions resulting from warfare persist unchecked.

Link – Climate damage caused by russia’s war in Ukraine: 24 February 2022 – 23 February 2023 – Ecoaction


The impact of Russia’s war against Ukraine on the state of country’s soil: Analysis results

Eruptions from aerial bombs and artillery shelling, mined territories, destroyed heavy military equipment, leakage of oil products, burned areas from fires, and landslides have become the main markers signaling a powerful impact on soil resistance to pollution, bringing with it severe socio-economic consequences, both locally and nationally.

This study aims to research the impact of military operations on soil by assessing its ecological and geochemical state in areas of active hostilities to determine the criteria for soil pollution according to the degree of damage. Based on its findings, the study also seeks to propose the main measures for post-war restoration of the soil in Ukraine, taking into account the regional landscape and geochemical features and types of land use.

Link – The impact of Russia’s war against Ukraine on the state of country’s soil: Analysis results – Ecoaction


Case study: Heat Pump and Solar Power Plant — Outpatient Clinic in the Kyiv Region Has Become an Example of Green Reconstruction

In the outpatient clinic of the village of Horenka, in the Kyiv region, a ground-water heat pump and a solar power plant were put into operation. This is the first medical facility in the area where such an energy-efficient system is installed, and it should become an example of green reconstruction of the country.

The reconstruction in Horenka was initiated by Greenpeace Central and Eastern Europe as part of the “Greening the reconstruction of Ukraine by building city level partnerships” project and implemented in cooperation with NGOs Ecoaction, Ecoclub, Charitable Foundation Victory of Ukraine with the assistance of the Hostomel military administration and the Hostomel primary health care centre.

Link – Heat Pump and Solar Power Plant — Outpatient Clinic in the Kyiv Region Has Become an Example of Green Reconstruction – Ecoaction


Potential environmental impacts caused by russian aggression in Ukraine [Interactive map]

Since the start of russia’s full-scale war against Ukraine Ecoaction has recorded almost 1 500 cases of potential negative environmental damage caused by russian aggression. This data will help plan future research missions to establish the facts of the deterioration or destruction of our nature. A complete assessment of the damage will be possible after the end of active hostilities. But Ukrainians will feel the consequences of this war for years.

Therefore, it is vital to stop the war as soon as possible. Russia must pay for all crimes against humanity, the destruction of businesses and infrastructure, and crimes against the environment.

For the past year all information presented was systematically collected by a group of 12 Ecoaction volunteers from open sources (media and official reports of the authorities).

Link – Potential environmental impacts caused by russian aggression in Ukraine [Interactive map] – Ecoaction

Topic Contact person
Climate policy Yevheniia Zasiadko (

Anna Ackermann (

Sofia Sadogurska (

Vasylyna Belo (

The impact of russian war on Ukrainian environment and climate Anna Ackermann (

Yevheniia Zasiadko (

Olga Polunina (

Vasylyna Belo (

Bohdan Kuchenko ( with emphasis on ecosystems

Maria Diachuk ( with emphasis on land

Sofia Sadogurska ( with emphasis on marine ecosystems

Green Reconstruction of Ukraine Olga Polunina (

Yevheniia Zasiadko (

Kostiantyn Krynytskyi ( with emphasis on energy sector

Anna Ackermann (

Ukraine Facility Olga Polunina (
Ocean-Climate nexus in climate negotiations Sofia Sadogurska (
The impacts of war and climate change on agriculture

Green recovery solutions for agriculture sector

Anna Danyliak (
Energy transition Kostiantyn Krynytskyi (

Anna Ackermann (

Anastasiia Gorbach ( with emphasis on energy efficiency

Fossil fuel and nuclear phase out in Ukraine Anastasiia Bushovska ( with emphasis on coal phase out

Artem Kolesnyk ( with emphasis on nuclear energy

Communications and climate mobilization Olha Tarasenko (

Darya Lazareva (

Oleksandra Khmarna (

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