Vienna, 11 December 2012 – "With today's decision of the Ministerial Council to establish the UN Office for Sustainable Energy in Vienna, the Austrian Government is making yet another important step towards ensuring access to affordable and sustainable energy", Vice-Chancellor and Foreign Minister Michael Spindelegger said today after the meeting of the Ministerial Council. "Vienna is becoming the United Nations energy hub, and the city's role as official seat of UN agencies is further expanded", the Vice-Chancellor continued.
"Access to sustainable energy is a fundamental prerequisite for reduction of poverty in the world and for achieving the Millennium Development Goals. We are proud to be able to make an active contribution to reaching these objectives", Spindelegger continued. Renewable energies and energy efficiency are also priority issues of Austrian development cooperation. “Austria together with the UNIDO and IIASA organises the biennial Vienna Energy Forum, and the Global Forum on Sustainable Energy (GFSE) was also launched in Vienna", Spindelegger added.
The Sustainable Energy for All initiative of the UN Secretary General has set itself the following objectives to be achieved by 2030: universal access to sustainable energy, doubling the increase of energy efficiency and doubling the share of renewable energies in the international energy mix. Numerous governments and private investors are already on board. Hundreds of concrete commitments have been made by both public and private sectors for projects to implement the initiative. 50 billion USD have been promised by private investors alone; more than one billion people are to profit from this. The new Office in Vienna will be managed by Kandeh Yumkella, the current Director General of UNIDO. Yumkella will leave UNIDO to take up his new role in the middle of 2013.
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