Dubrovnik, 4 October 2013 – "If we want to ensure sustainable development of our economy that is efficient in terms of resources, we will have to rethink the way we handle energy and its production, distribution and consumption", State Secretary Reinhold Lopatka said in his speech at the Croatia Forum on European Energy Security in Dubrovnik that was attended by numerous foreign ministers and state secretaries from EU and Western Balkan states.
"We must stop consuming the resources of future generations today and stay competitive at the same time. Austria has set great store by energy diversification for many years. Only by improving our energy efficiency and promoting renewable energies will we be able to secure energy supply in the long term", Lopatka said.
"Austria has made major investments in renewable energies and energy efficiency with these aims in sight. We have the widest provision of renewable energies in the electricity sector of all the 28 EU member states. Austria ranks third in the EU in terms of the renewable energy share in its overall energy consumption", the State Secretary continued.
"Our focus in energy diversification is on hydro power and solar and wind energy. We are clearly opposed to nuclear energy, because it is neither safe nor sustainable. The change from nuclear energy to alternative energy carriers is one of the biggest challenges the EU must face in the next few years", Lopatka said. "Access to energy is a basic requirement for development, health provision, education, clean drinking water and food safety. It is not least for this reason that Austria supports the UN initiative "Sustainable Energy for All" that is domiciled in Vienna in its fight against fuel poverty and climate change."
State Secretary Lopatka also used his attendance of the Croatia Forum to meet Albanian Foreign Minister Ditmir Bushati and Croatian Foreign Minister Vesna Pusic for bilateral talks, and for exchanges with Peter Burian, State Secretary of the Slovak Republic, and his Serbian counterpart Vera Mavric.
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