Final Statement: Johannesburg Plan of Implementation 2002

UK Business Council for Sustainable Energy
US Business Council for Sustainable Energy
European Business Council for a Sustainable Energy Future
Australian Business Council for Sustainable Energy

Renewable Energy – Johannesburg Plan of Implementation

of the House of Commons
United Kingdom
December 2002

The Business Councils represent businesses leading the promotion of sustainable energy internationally.  We support a government-led (‘Type 1’) international action plan for the accelerated uptake of sustainable energy globally.  We believe this will be essential to meet both the Millennium Development Goals and to achieve the reduction in greenhouse gas emissions necessary to protect the global climate.

Innovative partnerships are at the heart of ensuring the commitment and participation of sectors and communities required to bring this about (the approach underpinning the ‘Type 2’ agreements).  However such voluntary initiatives by themselves are unlikely to be adequate to tackle the most serious problems of sustainable development.

Redressing the current lack of modern energy provision to substantial populations in the world, particularly in the South, and the well-documented barriers facing sustainable energy technologies and services will require a coordinated framework from governments. This is important to foster confidence from lenders, investors, enterprises and communities that there is both aspiration and commitment internationally to a new direction; and confidence in the technologies and services that are at the heart of sustainable energy provision.

The Business Councils urge governments, in their deliberations over the energy elements of the Plan of Implementation:

  • to adopt a global target that will substantively increase the share of renewable energy internationally.  A target should be specific enough to affect investment and policy decisions, thereby contributing to a reduction in technology costs internationally through scale, learning and confidence;
  • to focus such a target on the renewable energy technologies that most require a strong signal of government commitment and confidence – the ‘new renewable’ energy technologies.  (Noting that this would not preclude governments from pursuing other renewable energy options consistent with national sustainable development priorities).

To be effective, an international approach must be backed by strong, clear national sustainable energy policies and goals in developed and developing countries that create a consistent approach to achieving sustainable energy for development.  We strongly support an approach that recognises the role of energy efficiency and conservation for achieving these goals.

The US Business Council for Sustainable Energy (BCSE) was formed in response to the 1992 Rio Earth Summit’s challenge of incorporating the energy industry into the sustainable development discussion.  In 1995 the European Business Council for a Sustainable Energy Future was formed, and in 2001 and 2002 progressive energy companies in the UK and Australia committed to creating Business Councils for Sustainable Energy in the United Kingdom (UK BCSE) and Australia.


Michael Marvin 082 858 3435
UK BCSE avid Green 082 858 1465