This article examines the prospects for the development of renewable energy in Russia, concentrating on remote northern settlements as a possible market niche. The article discusses conducive factors and obstacles to the development of renewable energy in Russia as a whole. It starts by noting many factors conducive to renewable energy in Russia and then goes on to identify some major obstacles that nonetheless make it difficult to develop renewable energy in the country. The author further examines how these obstacles might be overcome and an initial foothold be established by replacing the northern freight system (severnyi zavoz) with locally produced renewable energy. The article draws on interviews with Russian scholars, government officials, and business people related to energy and/or the north, as well as written materials on severnyi zavoz and renewable energy in Russia.