Ladies and Gentlemen,
I am pleased to welcome you to the launch of the Global Knowledge Platform on Sustainable Water and Energy Solutions.
I thank the Director General of Itaipu Brazil, Mr. Joaquim Silva e Luna, and the Director General of Itaipu Paraguay, Mr. Ernst Ferdinand Bergen Schmid – for the valuable support of ITAIPU Binacional in the development of this important Global Knowledge Platform.
The COVID-19 pandemic is the most immediate global challenge facing humanity. We must stand together to address this pandemic decisively, and recover better and stronger.
At the same time, we must not lose sight of our collective responsibility towards present and future generations. This is a core principle of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris Agreement on climate change. Even before this pandemic, we were not on track to achieve many of the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.
Yet, while COVID-19 is our most urgent threat, climate change remains the biggest peril over the coming years. Thus, how we overcome the pandemic can also determine our chances of succeeding at climate change and the Sustainable Development Goals.
The achievement of SDG 6 on water, and SDG 7 on energy, are closely interlinked, and critical to achieving the 2030 Agenda and the Paris Agreement. The pandemic has also demonstrated how both are essential to our health.
Energy is essential for the extraction, treatment and distribution of water. And water is indispensable for the production, distribution and use of energy. Integrated approaches to energy and water solutions are therefore crucial if we are to achieve both goals.
That is why the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs and Itaipu Binacional jointly launched the “Sustainable Water and Energy Solutions Network” in December 2018.
This multi-stakeholder Network is a global platform for all stakeholders – to design and implement the integrated approach to SDG 6 and SDG 7 – in support of all SDGs and global climate objectives.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Today, I am pleased to launch the Global Knowledge Platform on Sustainable Water and Energy Solutions.
This on-line platform will provide a valuable mechanism. Users will have the opportunity to exchange knowledge and experiences related to sustainable water and energy solutions. It is designed to enhance sharing of data, analysis, tools and best practices. Users will also have the opportunity to discuss innovative technological options to enhance resilient and sustainable recovery from COVID-19.
Moreover, forthcoming UN conferences will provide major opportunities to enhance integrated approaches. These include:
- the High-level Dialogue on Energy,
- the Global Sustainable Transport Conference,
- the UN Ocean Conference,
- the Food Systems Summit, and
- the Conference of Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.
Indeed, as a global hub on integrated water and energy solutions, the Knowledge Platform can be a valuable resource for such global gatherings.
The current crisis is an unprecedented wake-up call. To ensure that the world emerges from the crisis stronger, the United Nations and all partners must stay the course together, with solidarity and multilateral determination.
I wish you all very fruitful discussions.