UN-Energy and Partners Organize Roundtable on Climate Finance and Energy Access

7 April 2011: A Roundtable on Climate Finance and Energy Access was held on 7 April 2011, during the 2011 Bloomberg New Energy Finance Summit, which was held from 4-7 April 2011, in New York, US. The Roundtable, hosted by Bloomberg New Finance in association with the UN Foundation and UN-Energy, championed the UN's efforts to raise awareness about the importance of extending modern energy services to the billions who still lack them.

These efforts include the UN General Assembly's resolution proclaiming 2012 as the International Year of Sustainable Energy for All. The Roundtable brought together policy advocates and investors who discussed the manner in which modern energy services can be provided, and the means needed to pay for them. Participants addressed: new ways to expand energy's reach among the world's poorest; and how to ensure that capital makes its way to smaller distributed solutions as well as to larger projects. These discussions aimed to push forward the agenda of the International Year of Sustainable Energy for All in 2012, and many organizations at the Roundtable, such as Bloomberg New Energy Finance, The Energy and Resources Institute, and SELCO-India, expressed their organizations' commitment to supporting the Year.

Throughout 2012, member States, with assistance from UN agencies, will create National Coordinating Committees to raise awareness about the issue and available solutions, and chart a course for reaching universal access to energy by 2030 – a goal set in 2010 by the Secretary-General's Advisory Group on Energy and Climate Change, which is chaired by the Director-General of the UN Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), Kandeh K. Yumkella. Speaking at the Roundtable, Yumkella stressed the need for a global commitment to move energy access up the political and development agendas in order to overcome the obstacles to energy access. He highlighted that “the Year affords an unparalleled opportunity to focus attention and secure commitments from governments, private businesses, academia, civil society, international organizations and NGOs.” [UNIDO Press Release] [Roundtable Website]