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UN Secretary General promotes energy initiative

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has urged governments, the private sector and civil society to make significant commitments to minimise energy output.

Ki-moon was speaking yesterday at the World Future Energy Summit, which serves as the global launch of 2012 as the International Year of Sustainable Energy for All, and called for everyone to support his Sustainable Energy For All initiative.

“Across the world we see momentum building for concrete action that reduces energy poverty, catalyses sustainable economic growth and mitigates the risks of climate change,” Ki-moon said.

“Achieving sustainable energy for all is both feasible and necessary. My initiative will help us meet these objectives simultaneously. It can be a triple win for all,” he added.

Ki-moon’s appearance marked his first visit abroad during his second term of office. He has set sustainable development as his top priority for his next five year term.

Globally, one person in five lacks access to modern electricity and twice that number rely on wood, coal, charcoal or animal waste for cooking and heating.  In developed countries the problem is a substantial waste of energy.

Ki-moon said by 2030 he wants to see universal access to modern energy services, double the improvement rate of energy efficiency and double the share of renewable in the global energy mix.

For his initiative Ki-moon appointed a group of global leaders from business, finance, government and civil society to mobilise action commitments that will help drive change on the ground, in corporate board rooms, and in policy portfolios around the world.

The group met in Abu Dhabi to produce a framework for an action agenda, which proposes several high-value actions at the national and international level, including action to expand energy access, promote efficiency standards and policies, and strengthen investment in renewables.

Ki-moon will launch the agenda and publicise the commitments made by all stakeholders to the initiative at the UN Conference on Sustainable Development in June.

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