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Mixed Efforts To Achieve Energy Goals Highlighted At The End Of Sustainability Week


The President of the UN General Assembly called
for the acknowledgement of mixed efforts to achieve the
goals of the
Decade
of Sustainable Energy
, as the UN’s
first
ever Sustainability Week
drew to a
close on Friday.

The unanimous declaration of
the Decade of Sustainable Energy for All in 2012 aimed to
hone on the importance of improving “access to reliable,
affordable, economically viable, socially acceptable and
environmentally sound energy services and resources for
sustainable development.”

Dennis Francis said
there have been both achievements and shortcomings in
meeting the goal throughout the decade.

He noted that
developing countries experienced a 9.6 per cent annual
growth in renewable energy installation and the global
population with access to electricity has increased from 87
per cent to 91 per cent since 2015.

Yet, he said,
the pace of energy transformations is still much
too slow – and the benefits are not shared
equitably.

‘Business as usual cannot be
a credible option’

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Mr. Francis said urgent action
needs to be taken to address these sustainability issues,
especially since more than 73 million people in
least-developed countries continue to remain without
electricity.

“We must truly deliver to all people,
universal access to affordable, reliable, sustainable, and
modern energy, while substantially increasing the share of
renewable energy in the global energy mix by 2030,” he
said.

He also stressed actively trying to make
renewable energy three times more widespread worldwide and
doubling how much energy we save each year.

Most
important, he said, is rectifying, “…the stark
moral failure evident in the fact that billions still live
without adequate energy, or any energy at all, while others
are reportedly planning lunar vacations being offered
commercially.

Meeting the goal

Mr.
Francis suggested three ways of meeting their goals –
money, making use of resources, and international
cooperation.

He said trillions of dollars are needed
to accelerate the energy transitions and avoid the impacts
of climate change. Next, he said, governments, the private
sectors, civil society and more need to work together to
source innovations and propel action. And finally,
international cooperation “must continue to be the
standard bearer for our
efforts.

Sustainability Week
discussions

During the week, ministers and
dignitaries spent time reflecting on the role of energy in
tourism,
transport
and infrastructure.

As
the week went by, the Assembly President called for equal
access to sustainable transportation, especially in
vulnerable communities; a global tourism sector with
deep local value chains that expand demand for
locally made products and services
,” and for
quality, reliable, sustainable and resilient
infrastructure
,” that will make populations safer
against natural hazards and sustain trade and commerce,
among other things.

Decade of Sustainable
Energy

Though the Decade of Sustainable Energy draws
to a close this year, the Assembly President is encouraging
member states, private sectors and other stakeholders to
“further advance international cooperation” to recommit
delivering on goals.

“If we are to accomplish our
goals and targets by 2030, we must make every effort to
sustain this political momentum after the Decade officially
concludes,” he
said.

© Scoop Media

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