GFSE Side Events at the Vienna Energy Forum 2015

The Vienna Energy Forum 2015 brought together more than 1,600 policy makers, country delegations, experts and representatives from the civil society and the private sector to discuss pathways after Rio+20. The numerous debates were led by about 110 high-level speakers.

Some of the key outcomes were:
1) There is a close interconnection between climate action and action on sustainable development goals. Solutions must address both dimensions.
2) Without effective policies and measures, more than two thirds of energy efficiency potential will remain untapped.
3) In order to meet energy efficiency and renewable energy goals, investments and scaled-up action in the areas of cities, transport, buildings and industry.
4) The energy-food-water-health nexus needs to be accounted for when framing policy and during its subsequent implementation.
5) Regional cooperations can help strengthen the effectiveness of policies, while lowering transaction costs and promoting economies of scale.

The Global Forum on Sustainable Energy (GFSE) was present at this event and helped further discussions on green buildings and regional cooperation through two side events:

Side Event: Green Building Concepts and Policies, Vienna Energy Forum, 19 June 2015, Hofburg, Vienna

The Global Forum on Sustainable Energy (GFSE) in cooperation with the Austrian Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, Environment and Water Management (BMLFUW), the Austrian Development Agency (ADA), and the Austrian Energy Agency (AEA) organized a Side Event on "Green Building Concepts and Policies" during the Vienna Energy Forum 2015.

This event took place in the afternoon of 19 June 2015 and helped build bridges between the technical and political level in order to contribute to the sustainable development of the building sector. Developing countries are currently being confronted with problems of rapid urbanization, population growth and rising energy demand. These issues need to be taken into consideration in order to develop comprehensive solutions for sustainable housing.

Ms. Elfriede Anna More, Austrian Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, Environment and Water Management, Head of Department I/9., International Environmental Affairs provided the welcome address, before giving the floor to the two keynote speakers, who spoke about the technical/architectural as well as the policy challenges for greening the building sector. Following these speeches, the five panelists exchanged experiences and discussed requirements and framework conditions for comprehensive solutions. The panel session was moderated by Ms. Irene Giner-Reichl, Austrian Ambassador to the People's Republic of China and Mongolia, President of GFSE and Vice-Chair of REN21. The event further highlighted the substantial opportunities available in developing countries for actors to become involved in the green building sector and the benefits regional building policies can bring to an area. In this context, West Africa and the activities of the ECOWAS Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (ECREEE) were presented as a prominent example. Additionally, panelists emphasized how in many cases, strong national policies have not had the desired effect due to the lack of local capabilities and the existence of weak enforcement mechanisms. The SE4All Building Accelerator can help open up a dialogue between governments and technical experts in order to facilitate the development of sustainable housing in developing countries. Furthermore, it was pointed out that the use of local materials in energy-efficient buildings should be promoted and that a long-term program of academic exchange is needed to build capacities and ensure lasting change.

Agenda

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Keynote Speakers

Panelists

  • Mr. Mahama Kappiah, Executive Director of the ECOWAS Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (ECREEE)
  • Mr. Reid Detchon, UN Foundation (SE4All Building Efficiency Accelerator)
  • Mr. Jakob Schleger, Schöberl & Pöll GmbH
  • Mr. Werner Weiss, AEE Intec
  • Mr. Fritz Oettl, Pos Sustainable Architecture

 

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Side Event: Energizing the SAMOA Pathway, Vienna Energy Forum, 19 June 2015, Hofburg, Vienna

On 19 June 2015, the Energy Branch of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), the SIDS Sustainable Energy and Climate Resilience Initiative (SIDS DOCK), the Global Forum on Sustainable Energy (GFSE), the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) and the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) organized a Side Event on "Energizing the SAMOA Pathway - Launch of the SE4All Network of Regional Sustainable Energy Centres for Small Island Developing States (SIDS)".

The side event was moderated by Ms. Irene Giner-Reichl, Austrian Ambassador to the People's Republic of China and Mongolia, President of GFSE and Vice-Chair of REN21. The event provided a status update of the SIDS DOCK process and the network of regional sustainable energy centres for Small Island Developing States (SIDS). The event highlighted the importance of regional sustainable energy centres, which help coordinate national strategies, reduce transaction costs, minimize overlap and maximize impact. Such centres also provide the perfect hub for knowledge dissemination, because they target many countries at once. Panelists also discussed the potential role of the south-south triangular partnership in the context of the Decade of Sustainable Energy For All (SE4All) and the post-2015 environmental and developmental challenges.

Agenda

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Keynote Speakers

  • Mr. Pradeep Monga, Director of the Energy Branch, UNIDO
  • H.E. Vince Henderson, Permanent Representative of Commonwealth of Dominica to the UN, Chair of the SIDS DOCK Steering Committee

Panelists

  • H.E. Darcy W. Boyce, Minister in the Office of the Prime Minister Energy, Immigration, Telecommunications and Invest Barbados
  • Mr. Devon Gardner, Director of the Energy Unit of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM)
  • Mr. Solomone Fifita, Deputy Director (Energy), Economic Development Division, Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC)
  • Mr. Roberto Ridolfi, Director, Sustainable Growth and Development, Directorate General for International Cooperation and Development, European Commission
  • Mr. Mahama Kappiah, Executive Director of the ECOWAS Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (ECREEE)