Korea's Global Renewable Energy Forum 2017: Volunteering solutions for green energy

News
13 November 2017
Bonn, Germany

A Special Event organized by the Republic of Korea on the sidelines of the Climate Change Conference (COP23) focused on innovative energy transition in the transport sector, highlighting the link between land, renewable energy and climate change, and showcasing innovative ways for expanding energy access in the Global South.

Olivier Adam speaking at the Global Renewable Energy Forum 2017
UNV Executive Coordinator Olivier Adam speaks at the Global Renewable Energy Forum in Bonn, organized by the Embassy of the Republic of Korea. (UNV, 2017)

The Global Renewable Energy Forum was organized by the Embassy of the Republic of Korea on 12 November 2017, as a Special Event during COP23.  Bearing the title “Towards a Low Carbon, Green Energy Future”, the event provided added value to the COP 23 policy discussions by engaging and informing an international audience on state-of-the-art, energy transition applications and policies in the sectors of transport (e.g., strategy roadmaps, electric vehicles, batteries, ‘mobility as a service’, and diesel phase out policies); and innovative, Integrated Systems (e.g., smart cities, heating and cooling).  The event further highlighted the link between land, renewable energy, and climate change, and showcased innovative ways for enabling energy access in the Global South.

UNV Executive Coordinator Olivier Adam presented a keynote speech on volunteering partnership solutions towards a green future for all.

The global environmental movement started with volunteerism, and through volunteerism the momentum to tackle climate change continues to build. Volunteerism enhances the scale, reach and impact of energy and climate policies by mobilizing the critical mass needed to put ambitious targets into action.
—Olivier Adam, UNV Executive Coordinator

An all-day event, the Forum featured several panel discussions around low carbon options and innovative integrated systems.  One of these was a special session on “Enabling Energy Access in the Global South”, moderated by UNV.  This session featured the Green Innovation Alliance – an innovative partnership that breaks new ground for volunteerism in the renewable energy sector. 

"In addition, UNV and Korea are working to create the Green Innovation Alliance. The aim of the Alliance is to create synergies around renewable energy solutions and enhance the resilience of communities towards climate change through volunteerism," Mr Adam said.  “Volunteerism promotes long-term processes that encourage empowerment at the grassroots-level and change in attitudes. It opens pathways for greater participation of people in the environmental sustainability of their communities.”

The Alliance will use volunteerism to help build the necessary momentum for the socio-economic transition toward low-carbon growth.

The Green Innovation Alliance will create synergies for renewable energy solutions and community resilience, combining online and onsite UN Volunteers. This alliance will support multi-sectoral collaboration for the Global Goals, including with the private sector, translate policy into local action and promote South-South Cooperation.             
—Dr Oh Sung Hwan, Minister-Counselor, Embassy of the Republic of Korea

Through this initaitive, UNV will connect stakeholders in the public, private and civil sectors, broker engagement and mobilize volunteers. Through corporate sponsoring, national, international and online UN Volunteers will be strategically placed to support renewable energy projects within UN organizations.