Key renewable energy players call for sustainability and climate resilience across food and energy systems
Energy use is responsible for about one-third of greenhouse gases emitted by food systems. However, large disparities remain in the access to and use of sustainable, clean energy for agricultural activities across the world. In the lead up to the UN Food Systems Summit and the High-Level Dialogue on Energy, accelerated action is needed to achieve sustainability and climate resilience for both food and energy systems.
In a joint statement issued today by the European Renewable Energies Federation (EREF) and over 45 leading renewable energy players under the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) Coalition for Action, renewable energy and agriculture sectors were urged to break down silos and collaborate. By jointly advancing the integration of renewables in the agriculture sector, stakeholders can make an essential contribution towards achieving Sustainable Development Goals and global climate objectives.
EREF Vice-President Rainer Hinrichs-Rahlwes highlights: “Rapidly moving the agriculture sector away from fossil fuels to renewable energy will make food systems more sustainable and resilient to climate change. Renewables can meet all energy needs across the agri-food value chain. Renewables also offer significant benefits that extend well beyond energy and food sectors. Modern renewable energy will significantly improve incomes and create sustainable employment and future proof job opportunities in all parts of the world.” In its joint statement, the Coalition for Action puts forward the following five recommendations for governments, the renewable energy sector, and the agriculture sector to jointly consider
1. Cross-sectoral strategies to co-ordinate the planning and implementation of energy transition and food systems transformation.
2. Multifaceted financing tools to improve access to capital for farmers, enterprises and end-users.
3. Innovative, cross-sectoral business models that enable energy access and improved agricultural yields while protecting biodiversity, ecosystems and communities.
4. Capacity-building initiatives to provide local actors with relevant skills, knowledge and resources to integrate renewable energy solutions in agriculture projects.
5. Improved data on renewables applications in agriculture to de-risk projects, improve acceptability and effectively guide sustainable investments.
Strong collaboration across sectors and in line with these five recommendations will be critical to successfully delivering on the energy transition and food systems transformation. For a more detailed view of the IRENA Coalition for Action’s joint statement on advancing renewables in agriculture, please click here.
22 September 2021