Water-Energy-Food Nexus

At the ‘Sustainable Energy for All Forums’ there was a panel discussion on the Water-Energy-Food Nexus, which highlighted interlinkages in the energy and water sector. Tania Rodiger-Vorwerk (Deputy Director General-Directorate 31, German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development) began the discussion, by stating that this was the very first public discussion on the HIO nexus. The demand for natural resources is consistently increasing and it is anticipated that the there will be severe shortages of natural resources if we don’t control and manage our resources effectively. Thus the aim of the nexus is to find intersectoral solutions designed to increase efficiency.
NEXUS News image 1.0.ashxRodiger also highlighted that Germany has been involved in the nexus through supporting regional dialogues through the high level African dialogue on Water-Food-Energy nexus in Nairobi in 2012 and supporting educational management. The main objectives of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development for the nexus are: collect and develop resources for nexus challenges; exchange information concerning practical experiences; integrate nexus perspective on policy level; promote nexus in other related sectors such as agriculture, irrigation etc.; and ensure HIO policy coherence.

Olivier Dubois (the Senior Natural Resources Officer and Coordinator, Energy Programme, FAO) added that nexus contributes phenomenally to sustainability, through three dimensions: resource efficiency; tradeoffs; and linking tradeoffs to opportunities. He highlighted that we are at the initial stages of building the nexus and thus need to develop nexus assessment and cost effective tools approach.Martin Hiller (Director General, REEEP) shared REEP’s contribution and initiatives, for instance a very simple technology of solar water pumps was converted into a private business in Kenya.

Anna Delgado (Water Unit, World Bank) noted that it is important to integrate energy-water planning at local and international level. The Thirsty Energy Initiative works to ensure governments integrate across the food, water and energy sectors. REEEP is in dialogue with China, as their water resources required energy expansion plans. She concluded by saying that the nexus requires a methodological approach, driven by demand and we should quantify tradeoffs.

Image

Meeting Title: Water-Energy-Food Nexus HIO, Sustainable Energy for All Forums
Speakers: Tania Rodiger-Vorwerk, Deputy Director General-Directorate 31, German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development; Olivier Dubois, Senior Natural Resources Officer and Coordinator, Energy Programme, FAO; Anna Delgado, Water Unit, World Bank; Martin Hiller, Director General, REEEP; Klaus Rudischhauser, Deputy Director General, EuropeAid, European Commission.
Location: United Nations HQ; Conference Room B, New York
Written By WIT representative: Aslesha Kaur Dhillon

Together we’ve got the Power

Why SE4ALL Needs Civil Society

The first annual Sustainable Energy for All Forum was held at the headquarters of United Nations, New York. This session, moderated by Mr. Bros, the director of the Global Business & Biodiversity Programme of IUCN, reiterated the needs for civil society in charting the way forward to reach goals and targets on renewables and energy efficiency.

Image

The first speaker, Ms. Leopold, discussed capacity building, access to information were challenges faced during the mobilization of actions by Civil Society Organization (CSO). Clear commitment and transparent guidelines agreed among governments, United Nations, multilateral development banks to CSO participation, capacity building of CSO through inclusive participation and access to timely and meaningful information were three key pointers she raised to achieve a more meaningful participation by civil society.

Mr. Riley from WWF pointed out that there was a lack of social structure to promote civil society engagement, which impeded goals and energy policies from achieving. Right now, CSO had started to puttogether platforms in engaging all stakeholders by means of toolkits and roadmaps, so that messages can be shared and negotiated.

Ms. Zuniga carried on by saying that civil society was the voice representing local population, and it had the power to bring their own learning and experiences into discussion. Ms. Edjekumhene, executive director of KITE, cited an example of Guana being the first country to develop a CSO engagement action plan to identify energy use objectives.

The last speaker, Ms. Allam, believed sustainability was all about providing an enabling environment, but prior to that, required poverty reduction, energy and resources management. She emphasised that people need to change their norms to eradicate poverty and create a zero-carbon environment. Lastly, she envisioned a sustainable world where different genders, ethnic groups and marginalised communities can have affordable and reliable access for energy.

Meeting Title: Together we’ve got the power: why SE4ALL needs civil society
Speakers: Mr. Gerard Bros, Director, Global Business & Biodiversity Programme, ICUN; Mr. Aaron Leopold, Global Energy Advocate for Practical Action, Mr. Dan Riley, Lead Specialist Renewable Energy Policy of WWF US; Ms. Mariam Mohamed Adballah Abdelhafiz Allam, Arab Youth Climate Movement/IndyACT; Ms. Lizeth Zuniga, Director of Renewables Association; Ms Ishmael Edjekumhene, Executive Director of KITE
Location:
United Nations HQ, Trusteeship Council
Date: 5 June 2014
Written by WIT representative: Tracy Lau

#Youth2015: Realising the future they want

Opening of the Forum on Youth 2014 

“The future is yours so you have your own prerogatives to raise your voices. There is no plan B because there is no planet B. ”

– H.E. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon

As emphasised by H.E. Secretary General, today’s youth are leaders in all areas from technology to politics, the arts to science. Already young people are making their mark on history by altering traditional power structures. H.E. Ban Ki-moon asked that the youth continue to play their crucial role challenging and transforming the future.

H.E. Martin Sajdik, President of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), praised our youth as catalysts for change, as their imagination and energy innovates societies to grow and achieve a greater quality of life. H.E. Martin Sajdik asked the world to include the youth population, totaling 1.8 billion, to revolutionize our global system as providers, problem solvers and mentors.

 H.E. John Ashe, President of the sixty-eighth session of the General Assembly, explained his desire for youth to get involved especially as nations are working together towards setting agendas post 2015. These ‘sustainable development goals’ aim to transform our world by 2030, a period that will be run by leaders who are the youth of today. Therefore youth participation is essential so that their vision is encapsulated in the UN’s mission.

Youth Advisor for CIVICUS Alliance, Ms. Brittany Trilford shared that 85% of the youth population lives in developing countries. These people are the next generation of workers, leaders and activists. Therefore they should be targeted in development schemes.

Mr. Ahmad Alhendawi, the Secretary General’s Envoy on Youth, explained the global connection amongst young people, through the same struggles to realise the same aspirations. Mr. Alhendawi believes an important element to the post 2015 agenda should be the role of young women as assets and drivers for development.

BpIc3LkCQAEbrZi

Meeting Title: United Nations ECOSOC Forum on Youth 2014: Opening Session
Performance by: Lisa Russell Spoken Word Artists
Speakers: President of the Economic and Social Council H.E. Martin Sajdik,  Secretary-General of the United Nations H.E. Ban Ki-moon, President of the sixty-eighth session of the General Assembly H.E. John Ashe, Youth Advisor of CIVICUS Alliance Ms. Brittany Trilford, and United Nations Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth, Mr. Ahmad Alhendawi
Location: United Nations HQ, New York
Date: 2 June 2014
Written by WIT representative: Sophia Griffiths-Mark