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UN Under-Secretary General Urges Turning the Energy Equation Around in Favor of the Poor

United Nations Development Programme 18 September 2008: Speaking at the Financial Times-World Energy Council's Energy Leaders Summit, Ad Melkert, UN Under-Secretary General and Associate Administrator of the UN Development Programme, stated that access to affordable and sustainable energy services stands as a roadblock for

millions in Africa, Asia and Central and South America to escape poverty.

He stressed the need to turn the energy equation around in favor of the poor and outlined the gains that can be made from increasing access to energy for the poor: to reduce poverty, to expand markets, and to reduce climate change. He explained that, to take advantage of these opportunities, renewable energy technologies should be introduced “in a big way” and called for the right balance of international political commitment regarding access to energy for the poor, global investment and local institutional capacity, and national policies and budget allocation to meet the poor's energy needs. The Event took place from 16-17 September 2008, in London, UK. [UNDP Press Release]