CAPE TOWN – HE Minister Jeff Radebe, Minister of Energy of the Republic of South Africa, and Dr Fatih Birol, Executive Director of the International Energy Agency, jointly announced today South Africa’s decision to join the IEA as an Association country. South Africa is the first sub-Saharan African country to institutionalise its engagement with the IEA, a development that marks an important milestone for energy governance in Africa and globally.
An event in the European Parliament, hosted by Seb Dance MEP, Fredrick Federley MEP, the Bellona Foundation and the Center for American Progress. John Podesta, founder of the Center for American Progress, will be holding a keynote speech followed by a panel discussion on climate science funding in the US and EU.
The International Energy Agency held its third annual global conference on energy efficiency in Paris last week, bringing together more than 200 energy professionals from over 60 countries, to focus on the critical role that efficiency plays in the global energy transition, as well as opportunities that can be addressed. During the event, which brought together energy ministers, high-level officials from the public and private sector, as well as a wide range of organizations, Dr Fatih Birol, the IEA’s executive director, also launched an online platform for energy efficiency data and information, which showcases the depth of the IEA’s expertise on the topic.
Luca Jahier, the president of the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC), opened the high-level conference on Sustainable Development Goals and Initiatives for Sustainable Global Value Chains co-hosted by the EESC, the European Commission and the Social and Economic Council of the Netherlands by stating that there is no alternative to a sustainable economy: “Europe must be sustainable or it will simply not be”. The conference gathered representatives of businesses, trade unions, NGOs and professional organisations from all across Europe, and the opening session also counted on the participation of Frans Timmermans, Vice-President of the European Commission, and Sigrid Kaag, Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation of the Netherlands.
Today, the Energy Community Secretariat under the EU4Energy Governance framework kicked-off a two-day workshop aimed at improving energy infrastructure planning in the six Eastern Partner countries – Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine. The event brought together representatives of all six countries: regulators, ministries and transmission system operators.
S&D members on a delegation to Beijing have welcomed significant steps forward on fighting climate change in China but urged for faster progress. China is currently implementing a national emissions trading scheme, following successful pilots in seven Chinese cities and provinces. The scheme has been largely modelled on the EU Emissions Trading System (ETS), which has successfully put a price on carbon in Europe. The European Parliament delegation has met with key Chinese ministries and stakeholders.
The European Union reduced its greenhouse gas emissions by 22% between 1990 and 2017, while the economy grew by 58% over the same period. According to the new EU climate action progress report, however, amid robust economic growth, emissions increased slightly by 0.6 % between 2016 and 2017, mainly in transport and industry.