The UN has declared 2012 as ‘International Year of Sustainable Energy for All’, which officially kicked off yesterday:
Senior United Nations (UN) officials on Monday called on governments, the private sector and civil society to help expand energy access, improve efficiency and increase the use of renewables. As the ‘International Year of Sustainable Energy for All’ kicked off on Monday, the UN noted that globally, one in five people still lack access to modern electricity, and more than twice that number – three billion people – rely on wood, coal, charcoal, or animal waste for cooking and heating. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, speaking at the opening of the World Future Energy Summit in Abu Dhabi, underlined that sustainable energy for all is within reach. “We are here to build a new energy future,” he said. “A future that harnesses the power of technology and innovation in the service of people and the planet.” There is a website for this initiative here, and an Op Ed by the UN Secretary General here.
How this will be achieved remains a challenge, but the issue of helping the environment by helping people seems to be the right direction for many. And sure to spark controversy on the environmental front, as you can see in the video below.
This video has been the source of some controversy in Canada, where the debate ensues about the oil sands exploitation. As has been mentioned before, a true environmental agenda needs to consider human needs realistically, of which energy is at the forefront of issues. This balancing act is mentioned by Patrick Moore in an interview here, a balance that according to Moore radical environmental groups don’t seem to want to accept. For his interview, click on the link below: