The United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) convened a Conference on Energy for a Sustainable Development in Geneva on 17-21 November.

High-level representatives from Governments of Member Countries and the European Commission, as well as experts from Industry, Academia, Specialised/Regional and Non-Governmental Organisations and other top independent experts in this field attended this annual event.

This year the Conference included a Meeting of the Group of Experts on Energy Efficiency; a second highly specialised Workshop on the extension of the United Nations Framework Classification for Fossil Energy and for Mineral Resources and Reserves (UNFC, adopted in 2009) to Renewable Energy Sources; a third Meeting of a Group of Experts on the Prospective Development of Renewable Energy and, finally, the Annual Session (23rd) of the institutionalised UNECE Committee on Sustainable Energy.

The various meetings clearly demonstrates the increasing attention UNECE is paying to renewable energy thanks to its geographical area of competence within the United Nations system. In fact, this year’s event highlighted the crucial role renewable sources played in the framework of energy sustainability. This is outlined in the CEI Plan of Action, and its connected activities represent an area of interaction between the CEI and UNECE.

On behalf of the CEI, Giorgio Rosso Cicogna, Special Advisor to CEI Secretary General, participated in the Workshop on UNECE-2009 Classification for Renewable Energies. He strongly recommended that the Joint Research Center (JRC) of the European Commission should be associated from the very beginning to the work of ad hoc group of experts. In this context, he underlined the specific competences and expertise of the JRC, as well as its role in contributing to the production of technical legislation by the European Commission. Accordingly, he pointed out that the participation of JRC would contribute to better exploiting relevant opportunities and meeting the challenges ahead.
At the Meeting of Experts on Renewable Energies, Rosso Cicogna supported a proposal tabled by a representative of the European Commission, strongly endorsed by the representative of Germany, recommending that this ad hoc group of experts should make concrete proposals for small and medium sized investments related to the production of renewable energies. Local communities in countries with an energy deficit could implement this. Rosso Cicogna recalled the lessons learnt in the context of SEDRI (Sustainable Energy Development Regional Initiative) jointly managed by the CEI and by the Regional Cooperation Council of Sarajevo.

With the participation of the UNECE Secretariat a small group of participants considered the idea of preparing a list of sustainable small and medium-sized projects for renewable energy production, in order to invite specialised industries, regional authorities and local administrations, together with representatives of International Financial Institutions and of the Banking sector, to a special event next year in Geneva. This event could take place at the Palais des Nations and back to back with the next session of the UNECE Committee on Sustainable Energy, to promote a virtuous interaction among potential users, producers and funding opportunities focused on projects of this kind (small idro plants, power generating plants to treat agricultural or urban waste where mentioned among others).



 

regional cooperation for European Integration and sustainable development