UNUnited Nations Economic Commission for Europe

Press Release



Geneva, 27 May 2008 -- A global consensus on climate change mitigation has established energy efficiency as a key priority to address this growing problem. Government and business leaders at recent G8 Summits, the 2007 APEC Summit in Sydney, the Energy Charter and the European Union have confirmed this in their statements and agreements.

As a result, three international organizations concerned with energy cooperation in Europe are launching a combined effort to address this issue through a conference on International Cooperation on Energy Efficiency on Wednesday 28 May in the Palais des Nations. The Energy Charter, International Energy Agency (IEA) and United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) will explore future action on common themes.

The conference will be addressed by the senior officials from each organization, together with the State Secretary for Energy from Switzerland, the host country of the United Nations Office in Europe. During the Opening Session presentations will be delivered by:

  • Mr. Marek Belka, Executive Secretary, UNECE
  • Ambassador André Mernier, Secretary General, Energy Charter
  • Mr. Walter Steinmann, State Secretary for Energy of Switzerland
  • Mr. Didier Houssin, Director, Oil Markets and Emergency Preparedness, IEA

A Keynote address on Energy Efficiency and Global Action on Climate Change will be delivered by Mr. Brice Lalonde, Special Ambassador for Climate Change from France.

The conference will feature presentations by senior representatives from key countries and international organizations in Working Sessions on:

  • The Drivers for Energy Efficiency and its Role in a Low-Carbon Economy
  • National and Sector Perspectives of What Governments and Industry Can Do
  • Common Themes for International Cooperation.

Presentations will be delivered by speakers from Australia, China, India, Japan, Russian Federation, European Commission and the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

In a concluding Working Session on the Benefits of International Cooperation on Energy Efficiency, the Chairmen of intergovernmental bodies or senior officials from international organizations will consider future actions.

The conference International Cooperation on Energy Efficiency: Working Together for a Low-Carbon Economy will commence at 10 a.m. on 28 May 2008 in the Salle du Conseil [Council Chamber] of the Palais des Nations.

For further information about the conference, please contact:  

Mr. Adam Sek
Regional Adviser on Energy
UNECE Sustainable Energy Division
Palais des Nations, Bureau 460
CH - 1211 Geneva 10, Switzerland

Phone: + 41 (0) 22 917 2687
Telefax: + 41 (0) 22 917 0038
E-mail: adam.sek@unece.org

Ref: ECE/SED/08/P02