Dubai, United Arab Emirates

15 April 2013

Secretary-General's message to Dubai Global Energy Forum

Your Excellency Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Emirates and Ruler of Dubai, Distinguished participants,

I am pleased to send greetings to this important meeting and I thank the Governments of the United Arab Emirates and Dubai for their sponsorship.

Sustainable energy is among the most critical issues of our time.  One out of every five persons has no reliable access to electricity.  More than double this number – 40 per cent of the global population -- still relies on biomass for cooking and heating.  This is neither equitable nor sustainable.

Clean, modern and affordable energy services are essential for sustainable development.  By making sustainable energy accessible to all people and communities, we can eliminate extreme poverty and improve public health; power economic growth and reduce the risks of runaway climate change. 

My Sustainable Energy for All initiative promotes a clean energy transformation and low-carbon growth.  We have three ambitious but achievable objectives to be realized by 2030.  First, to provide universal access to modern energy sources; second, to double the worldwide rate of energy efficiency improvement; and third, to double the global share of renewable energy.

This Forum can help us advance on this journey.  Sustainable Energy for All is a multi-stakeholder partnership that brings all key actors to the table – governments, the private sector and civil society.  The United Arab Emirates has been a strong supporter, with the renewable energy hub for the initiative based in Abu Dhabi at the International Renewable Energy Agency.  I encourage everyone here to join and promote Sustainable Energy for All.  We need your support, ideas, know-how and resources. 

I wish you a productive meeting and look forward to innovative proposals that can help to provide sustainable energy for every woman, man and child.  Working together, we can build a brighter future for all.