UN and South African Government Support Access to Sustainable Energy
9 December 2011: UN agencies and the Government of South Africa have launched a pilot project that aims to provide access to clean energy to communities outside of Durban. The project is expected to deliver clean cooking, lighting systems and solar-heated water for clinics and schools in Ilembe District.During the launch, South African President Jacob Zuma noted that “advancing integrated energy solutions eases poverty and advances the country's development goals without compromising the environment.”
Currently, it is estimated that worldwide 2.7 billion people lack access to modern energy, with at least 1.3 billion lacking access to electricity, out of which 45% are living in Sub-Sahara Africa.
In September this year, the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon launched a “Sustainable Energy for All” (SE4A) initiative, which sets three goals for 2030 including achieving universal access to modern energy services; improving energy efficiency by 40%; and producing 30% of the world's energy from renewable resources. The initiative aims to bring together governments, civil society, private sector and the UN. [UNDP News]