10 March 2021
Global Champions, UN Call for Accelerating Action to Achieve Clean Energy For All
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Over 20 ministerial-level “Global Champions” called for urgent action to achieve affordable, clean energy for all by 2030 during the virtual launch-event leading up to the High-Level Dialogue on Energy.

Global Champion Ministers are taking the lead in galvanizing voluntary commitments - or Energy Compacts - in the lead up to the September Dialogue.

To prepare for the Dialogue, five Technical Working Groups will develop a roadmap identifying actions needed by 2030 to achieve SDG 7, following which Ministerial Forums will address the Dialogue's five themes.

The UN has launched its work to prepare a global roadmap for achieving affordable and clean energy for all (SDG 7) by 2030 and net-zero emissions by 2050. The recommendations will be submitted to the High-Level Dialogue on Energy, a summit-level meeting to be convened by UN Secretary-General António Guterres in September 2021. 

The official launch took place on 10 March 2021, with messages from over 20 ministerial-level “Global Champions” calling for urgent action to achieve affordable, clean energy for all by 2030. 

In his statement marking the launch, the Secretary-General highlighted that the High-Level Dialogue in September offers an opportunity “to advance practical solutions to accelerate the deployment of renewables globally and ensure that the developing world has access to them.”

Global Champion Ministers are taking the lead in galvanizing voluntary commitments – or Energy Compacts – in the lead-up to the Dialogue. National governments, cities, businesses, and civil society organizations are encouraged to present Energy Compacts as contributions to achieving SDG 7 and net-zero emissions, aligned with their enhanced Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) and long-term climate goals under the Paris Agreement. Each Ministerial-level Champion will work to mobilize commitments and actions in one of the five thematic areas of the Dialogue: energy access; energy transition; enabling the SDGs through inclusive, just energy transitions; innovation, technology and data; and finance and investment. They will also also co-host Ministerial Forums on these issues in June/July 2021.

To prepare for the ministerial forums, five Technical Working Groups – one for each of the Dialogue themes – will put forward a roadmap identifying actions needed by 2030 to achieve SDG 7 and the net-zero emissions by 2050 target. Each Working Group, co-led by three UN and international agencies, consists of 25-40 experts from government and international agencies, businesses, development banks, civil society organizations, academic institutions, and others. The first meetings of the Technical Working Groups took place between 22 February-2 March 2021.

Among the statements by Global Champion Ministers, Kitty van der Heijden, Vice Minister for International Cooperation of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, observed that the time we have left to achieve the net-zero emissions is the same timeframe – 30 years – as the typical lifetime of an energy investment. Diego Mesa Puyo, Minister of Mines and Energy, Colombia, highlighted the value of sharing best practices. Raj Kumar Singh, Minister of State (Power, New & Renewable Energy), India, said strong political commitment and innovative approaches will be needed, including by the private sector. Abdullah Bin Mohammed Belhaif Al Nuaimi, Minister of Climate Change and Environment, United Arab Emirates, reminded participants that energy poverty casts a shadow on 800 million people who live without electricity, and said the energy challenges we face should be addressed by taking the path of clean energy in COVID-19 recovery efforts. [UN Press Release] [High-Level Dialogue on Energy Launch webpage and link to launch video] [UN news]

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