The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris Agreement on Climate Change provide a new international framework for action on energy by all countries. With these agreements in place, the global focus is shifting to action and delivery on the commitments made by governments in 2015. For many developing countries this is a formidable challenge, one that requires international support both technical and financial.
The Sustainable Energy for All initiative is instrumental for achieving both SDG seven – clean and affordable energy for all – and the transition to a low carbon society. Led by the UN Secretary General and the World Bank President, SEforALL’s Advisory Board endorsed in June a new five-year strategy. Entitled “Going Further, Faster,” the action-driven strategy emphasizes expanding proven models for faster implementation and delivery of results.
The new strategy marks a shift in emphasis from advocacy to working through partners on enhanced action. At its launch CEO and Special Representative of the Secretary-General Rachel Kyte said: “We will empower leaders to go further, faster by brokering partnerships and unlocking finance. This will help us secure an energy transition that is clean, affordable and just – because no one must be left behind.”
The Copenhagen Centre on Energy Efficiency supported SEforALL’s strategy development and is shifting its emphasis as well. A business plan being developed will fully align its role as the initiative’s Energy Efficiency Hub with the new overall strategic direction. Sandrine Dixson-Declève, the SEforALL’s Chief Partnership Officer recently joined the Hub and staff of UN Environment in a two-day retreat to determine the priority areas as part of this exercise.
The new business plan is not yet finalized, but the Global Energy Efficiency Accelerator Platform will remain the SEforALL flagship activity on energy efficiency, although with a strengthened focus on practical partnerships and project formation at the national and sub-national levels. More emphasis will be put on public-private collaborations that engage key global institutions and companies from around the world. The Hub will also help individual Energy Efficiency Accelerators engage with cities and countries through targeted analysis and capacity building. As an example, using a grant from the Bitten and Mads Clausen Foundation in Denmark, the Hub is recruiting three technical experts to support the District Energy Accelerator’s deeper engagement in cities. The aim is to develop specific technical and financial proposals for new district energy project investments, and – if the approach proves successful – replicate it for other accelerators.
The Hub team will support SEforALL’s Management Team with strategic analysis for engagement with public and private leaders, and contribute to raising the profile of energy efficiency actions taken under the SEforALL umbrella. The new strategic direction makes for an exciting shift for SEforALL, and the Copenhagen Centre on Energy Efficiency will help its partners on the move from aspirations to results.