29 June 2011

Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

Nothing Short of ‘Clean Energy Revolution’ Needed to Address Critical


Modern Challenge, Secretary-General Tells Vienna Forum


Following is the text of UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s video message to the Second Vienna Energy Forum on 21 June:

Excellencies, UNIDO [United Nations Industrial Development Organization] Director-General [Kande] Yumkellah, Honourable Ministers, distinguished participants; I am pleased that you have assembled today to address a critical challenge of our time — sustainable energy for all.

The need is clear.  Three billion people still rely on biomass for cooking and heating; 1.5 billion have no access to electricity; a billion more only have access to unreliable electricity networks.

Clean, modern and affordable energy services are intimately linked to poverty alleviation, women’s empowerment, climate change and sustainable development; to justice and security.

We need nothing short of a clean energy revolution.  That is why the “Rio+20” Summit is so important.  It is an opportunity to promote clean energy transformation and a transition to low-carbon growth.  This Forum is an important milestone on that path.

Our work for the Millennium Development Goals has demonstrated the immense value of having specific targets to aim for — and by which to measure our progress.  That is why we have important goals related to energy that we would like all Governments to adopt in Rio:  first, universal access to modern energy sources by 2030; second, reducing energy intensity by at least 40 per cent; and third, bringing the share of renewable energy globally to at least 30 per cent.

Equity, environmental urgency and economic opportunity are the driving forces behind this campaign and its chosen three goals.  I have asked the Director-General of UNIDO to coordinate the United Nations system’s work on energy in this important year.

I encourage you to support his efforts, and I look forward to concrete, bold proposals from this Forum that will help us to achieve sustainable energy for all.

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For information media • not an official record