24 October 2019

The Sixth Green Energy Investments Forum gathers BSEC members to reaffirm commitment to promoting affordable and clean energy

The Sixth Green Energy Investments Forum, taking place during the 12th Annual International Conference on “Energy and Climate Change” in Athens, Greece (9 – 11 October 2019), offered an opportunity to learn about possibilities of investments for developing projects aiming at the green transformation of the economies of the BSEC Member States and the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals in the Black Sea Economic Cooperation (BSEC) Region.

The BSEC Member States have a significant potential to develop a sustainable energy future.

The Forum affirms its commitment to United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 7: ensuring access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all, and notes the designation of the Energy Policy and Development Center (KEPA) of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens as the global hub of the United Nations Academic Impact in this regard. The Forum recalls its own aspiration, through the sine qua non of a structured policy dialogue, to initiate procedures leading to concrete investment proposals that will transform ideas to green, bankable projects.

The Forum is encouraged by the expectation of the United Nations Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, that the world will see a “number of meaningful plans on dramatically reducing emissions during the next decade, and on reaching carbon neutrality by 2050.” The Forum notes a number of possible initiatives proposed by Professor Dimitrios Mavrakis of KEPA, which it has discussed in this regard, including energy efficiency in building construction, up to Smart Zero Energy level, using sustainable green energy approaches to combat energy poverty, enhancing local access to natural gas and renewable energy sources, access to liquefied natural gas in remote or isolated areas, its use in land and maritime transportation and off-grid power generation as a bridge to zero CO2 emissions target in 2050, and the electrification of shorter maritime routes. It notes the call to the Non-State National and Sub-national Actors (NSA) and especially the municipalities to develop International Cooperative Initiatives in close cooperation with the UNAI Hub SDG7. It notes that familiarity with the promise and pitfalls in energy use must inform students and young minds, and it welcomes the proposal to organise a youth contest on SDG 7.

In the United Nations Secretary-General’s phrase, we must “unite behind science.” The Forum welcomes the particular role of the United Nations Academic Impact in this regard and calls upon all involved in this critical endeavour, whether industrialists or environmental activists, government leaders or young citizens, investors or scholars, to constitute and share in this unity. In its 75th anniversary year, the United Nations remains the single universal forum where the people of the world, the aspirations they share, and the ideas they generate can come together in a global mission of “shaping our future together.”

There is need to elaborate more concrete projects promoting energy efficiency, renewable energy in the BSEC Region. Both the governments of the BSEC Member States and the International Secretariat of the Organization should intensify their efforts to find appropriate sources of financing them.

BSEC is encouraged to develop its cooperation with other specialized international financial institutions, in order to develop bankable project proposals through UNAI SDG7 Hub initiatives.