UNIDO contributes to the climate and digital transition at the EU Sustainable Energy Week
VIENNA, 24 June 2020 –The annual European Union Sustainable Energy Week (EUSEW) with the theme: Beyond the crisis: clean energy for a green recovery and growth, attracted over 6,000 virtual participants from all over the world.
Organized by the European Commission, the EUSEW is the foremost annual event focusing on renewables and energy efficiency in Europe. Since 2006, it has brought together global thinkers and leaders to conceive and develop a secure energy future for the region.
Convened digitally for the first time, this year’s event featured a number of sessions on clean recovery initiatives, including “Clean. Competitive. Connected. How to successfully design smart sector integration in the twin climate and digital transition,” co-organized by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), Orgalim and the European Heat Pump Association. The session provided concrete solutions and ‘’no-regret’’ options for a successful climate transition that capitalizes on frontier technologies – a central component of pandemic recovery packages and the European Union’s Green Deal.
Panelists emphasized the need for urgent and collective action. Carla Montesi, Director of Planet and Prosperity at the Directorate General for Development and Cooperation of the European Commission, stressed that the European Commission is committed to the EU Green Deal and to cooperation with partner countries. Montesi expressed the European Union’s willingness to forge closer and stronger partnerships with regions, including Africa, leveraging energy and digitalization as key components. She said collective action represents the possibility to go beyond the obstacles brought by the effects of the COVID-19 crisis and to empower society through the better use of sustainable energy and new technologies.
Cassandra Pillay, Climate Change Expert at UNIDO, asserted the importance of climate safe recovery packages in a post-pandemic world. Citing policy recommendations from the UNIDO Report, “Accelerating clean energy transition through Industry 4.0: manufacturing the next revolution,” Pillay highlighted the priority for countries to tap into digital development benefits equally, in order to prevent the roll back of development efforts. She invited those interested in the topic to attend the upcoming Vienna Energy Forum, taking place from 5-7 July 2021, at the Hofburg Palace in Vienna, Austria.
UNIDO spearheads actions and synergies at regional and international levels to achieve common energy and climate objectives in a cost-efficient manner. Through strong partnerships with the European Union and its industries, UNIDO shares knowledge and best practices on the twin digital and climate transition.The panelists agreed that countries must collaborate for a future clean energy system that is more connected and local. Malte Lohan, Director General of Orgalim, stressed the need for massive tech investment, alongside clear governance, to quickly channel these investment towards the best projects. Lohan quoted Adélaïde Charlier, climate activist and co-founder of Youth for Climate Belgium, saying,“If we don’t use the momentum we have today, we will never reach our climate goals.”
A recording of the session can be viewed here.
For more information, please contact:
Patrick Jean Gilabert
Head UNIDO Office in Brussels