The Paris agreement, according to Rachel Kyte, CEO of SE4All, increases the stakes for Sustainable Development Goal 7 (SDG 7): Affordable and Clean Energy. ‘What Paris did to the SDG,’ she explained during a briefing at the United Nations headquarters in New York last March, ‘is make it even more urgent that we get going on an energy transition that delivers sustainable energy to those who don’t have it sooner rather than later.’ The one-hour question and answer session, which took place before UN representatives, provided an overview of the challenges that need to be overcome to implement SDG 7. Delays in the energy transition, Ms. Kyte noted, will make it increasingly expensive to reach the climate target due to lock-in effects. She also emphasised that energy access, renewable energy, and energy efficiency are closely interlinked and cannot be achieved in isolation.
Ms. Kyte outlined SE4All’s role in helping UN member states implement SDG goals, and how the programme functions as a platform for ongoing initiatives for sustainable energy access. Implementation, she pointed out, is the key to achieving the SE4All goals. Strategies for achieving implementation include data collection and tracking progress, helping countries identify priorities and strategies, setting milestones, analysing and disseminating good practices, and helping countries develop a pipeline of bankable projects to access finance and close the finance gap. ‘The role of SE4All is to help all of us to go further, faster,’ said Ms. Kyte.
A video of the entire briefing is available here.