Thursday, July 08, 2010

IRENA becomes a fully fledged International Organisation


The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) becomes a fully fledged International Organization. Created in January 2009 with 75 Member States, IRENA has grown in just over a year to become one of the largest international organizations. 147 countries and the European Union already signed its statute.

The 25th instrument of ratification was deposited in Berlin on June 8th and according to Article XIX, the treaty enters into force 30 days after. 29 Member States have now ratified the Treaty.

In June 2009, Abu Dhabi was elected as IRENA’s Headquarters. The first international organization of the 21st century is also the first to be headquartered in the Gulf Region. Hélène Pelosse, Interim Director-General comments, “With 98 billion barrels, Abu Dhabi is the 7th proven oil reserve in the world. Nevertheless Abu Dhabi is committed to achieve 7% renewable energy in 2020 and to invest 10% of its GDP in Masdar, a zero carbon city. The United Arab Emirates are IRENA’s home and this far sighted country has continuously proved a very strong support for the Agency”.

Hélène Pelosse was elected as Interim Director-General one year ago at the age of 39. Mother of three, she states, “We cannot rely on energy of the past to power our future. Now renewables account for 18% of world electricity production but potential scenarios show it can reach 50% or even higher. It is the only energy source which can serve the needs of the predicted nine billion earth population in 2050”.

Improving the renewable energy share in the energy mix is a direct way of tackling climate change and GHG emission reduction. Whilst also encouraging energy security and independence. Furthermore, it also offers strong support for both economic and social growth.

The International Renewable Energy Agency is aiming to become the global voice for renewable energy. The Agency’s mandate is to assist its Member States define their strategy across the fields of all renewable energies: bioenergy, geothermal, hydropower, ocean, solar and wind.

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