Ban presses industry and governments to invest in green energy initiatives

7 October 2009 – Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today urged business leaders and governments to invest in green energy schemes that move economies away from carbon-intensive energy strategies, on the first day of a United Nations-backed renewable energy conference in Mexico.

“We need businesses that understand, develop and invest in renewable energy sources,” Mr. Ban said in an address to the 2009 Global Renewable Energy Forum, organized by the UN Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) along with the Mexican Government.

In his message delivered by Magdy Martínez-Soliman, the UN Resident Coordinator in Mexico, he stressed the need for “a global public investment programme for renewable energy with appropriate technology transfer.”

Green growth brings enormous benefits in the form of new jobs, less pollution, better public health and improved food security, the Secretary-General told the three-day gathering in León, Mexico, aimed at scaling up renewable energy initiatives in Latin America.

Mr. Ban said that the pursuit of energy efficiency and the expansion of renewable energy can promote clean development and break the connection between economic growth and rising greenhouse gas emissions.

“Most importantly, they can help to reduce poverty and empower billions of people whose development is held back by a lack of access to affordable electricity,” said Mr. Ban.

Mr. Ban underscored the Forum’s opportunity to generate political and public support for shifting towards “low-carbon and resource-efficient economies,” with only two months remaining until the UN climate change conference in Copenhagen that will finalize an international agreement on greenhouse gas emissions.

“Our goal is to ‘Seal the Deal’ in Copenhagen,” he said. “A deal that is ambitious, comprehensive and equitable, so all citizens of the world, whether in industrialized or developing countries, can live in an environmentally sustainable way.”


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