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News: Ethiopia, Denmark to host global meeting tackling climate change in New York

Environmental activists hold staged protests around the world to coincide with the global protests on climate change. Image Credit: AP

Addis Abeba, September 20/2019 – As key partners and climate ambitious countries, Ethiopia and Denmark lead the energy transition track at the UN Climate Action Summit in New York on 23 September on a personal request by UN Secretary-General António Guterres.

On 23 September at the UN Climate Action Summit, governments, private companies, multilateral development banks, investors and civil society will join forces to boost ambition and to accelerate global climate action. The UN Secretary-General has divided the work leading up to the summit into nine different tracks1, each focusing on a specific area where action is needed to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change. The global shift away from fossil fuels towards green energy such as wind, hydro and solar power is urgent. It is estimated that by 2050, the transition to renewable energy, improved energy efficiency and electrification could contribute up to 90 % of the needed CO2-emission reductions, making energy transition a vital priority for the planet. 

Ethiopia, Denmark and Sustainable Energy for All (SEforALL) have been requested to lead the discussions on sustainable energy transition. 

“Denmark has through several years, as a valued partner, supported Ethiopia’s ambition to develop a climate-resilient green economy. We share a strong appreciation that renewable energy from hydro, solar, geothermal and wind power will be vital for achieving the Sustainable Development Goal of ensuring affordable, reliable and sustainable electricity for all. Our leadership of the Energy Transition track of the United Nation Climate Action Summit demonstrates our commitment to mobilize global action; in particular for the peoples in the poorest and most vulnerable countries. We have an obligation to leave no one behind,” Seleshi Bekele (Phd), Ethiopia’s Minister of Water, Irrigation and Energy, said.

As an integral part of the Energy Transition Track, Ethiopia, Denmark and SEforALL are hosting the “Energy Action Forum” leading up to the summit in New York on 22 September. At this event, 200 high-level stakeholders from governments, businesses, financial institutions and international organizations will gather to accelerate action and push the agenda forward, present ambitious initiatives, share best practices and innovative technologies.

The mobilization of private investments is crucial in the transition towards green energy. Therefore, creating investment-friendly regulatory frameworks is one of the key objectives of the Energy Action Forum. As an example, Denmark is supporting Ethiopia’s Climate-resilient Green Economy Strategy through the Danish Energy Partnership Program by promoting wind power.

Ethiopia and Denmark have developed a strong partnership in the field of green energy transition since 2017 with the signing of the AWPGE (Accelerating Wind Power Generation in Ethiopia Program). In 2018, this lead to the financing of the USD200 million 100MW Assela Wind Farm. When complete, the Wind Farm will provide crucial energy diversification in Ethiopia, decreasing the vulnerability towards rainfall irregularities as well as providing green jobs and green energy for years to come.

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