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The United Nations Secretary-General launched the Sustainable Energy for All Initiative (SE4ALL) to mobilize action from all sectors of society in support of three interlinked objectives to be achieved by 2030: providing universal access to modern energy services; doubling the global rate of improvement in energy efficiency; and doubling the share of renewable energy in the global energy mix.
Today the world faces two urgent and interconnected challenges related to modern energy services – based on where they are available and where they are not. One out of every five people on Earth lives without access to electricity and the opportunities it provides for working, learning, or operating a business. Twice as many – nearly 3 billion people – use wood, coal, charcoal, or animal waste to cook their meals and heat their homes, exposing themselves and their families to smoke and fumes that damage their health and kill nearly 2 million people a year. Without access to energy, it is not possible to achieve the Millennium Development Goals.
Where modern energy services are plentiful, the challenge is different. Emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases from fossil fuels are contributing to changes in the Earth’s climate, to the detriment of those who depend on the planet’s natural systems for survival. Extreme weather events may grow more frequent and intense, in rich and poor countries alike, devastating lives, infrastructure, institutions, and budgets. Climate change threatens food and water security for hundreds of millions of people around the world, undermining the most essential foundations of local, national, and global stability. Competition for scarce resources is increasing, exacerbating old conflicts and creating new ones. As lands degrade, forests fall, and sea levels rise, the movement of people driven from their homes by environmental change may reshape the human geography of the planet.
A special report from the International Energy Agency (IEA) released in October 2011 indicates the scale of the challenge. The IEA estimates that:
Scientists warn that if the world continues on the current path, global temperatures could rise by more than four degrees Celsius by the end of this century. That will affect everything from the world economy to the health of citizens and the health of the ecosystems that sustain life on Earth, from energy, food, and water security to international security.
The Secretary-General’s Sustainable Energy for All initiative is built on the UN General Assembly declaration on the 2012 International Year of Sustainable Energy for All. Since its establishment in September 2011, it has already begun to catalyse action by a broad alliance of governments, businesses and civil society actors with a view of reaching three objectives to be achieved by 2030:
Transforming the world’s energy systems can lead to significant advances towards the MDGs, on the environmental side, while creating new economic opportunities in developed and developing countries alike. The Sustainable Energy for All initiative aims to “change the game” by harnessing the global convening power of the United Nations, the ability to mobilise bold commitments and leverage large-scale investment, and a rapidly expanding knowledge network from all stakeholders, i.e. governments, businesses, and civil society.
The initiative launched a Global Action Agenda in April 2012 in advance of the Rio+20. It identifies priority Action Areas to advance toward the three objectives and provides a framework for developing high-impact opportunities that serve as tangible entry points for stakeholders to take action in specific areas of interest.
The Sustainable Energy for All Initiative has already garnered strong support and concrete commitments. The African Energy Ministers, Small Island Developing States, EU Member States, the European Commission, and the Clean Energy Ministerial have all expressed their strong support to the initiative. The Rio+20 Outcome Document took full note of the Sustainable Energy for All initiative and declared that “We are all determined to act to make sustainable energy for all a reality.”
More than one hundred commitments and actions have been mobilized so far, demonstrating powerful early momentum from governments, private sector companies and civil society organizations to achieve SE4All by 2030, and the success of the initiative to-date has already created tremendous opportunities as well as significant work moving forward. Achieving universal access to modern energy services would require an investment of about $50 billion per year, a five-fold increase compared to the current level of investment to energy access. Doubling energy efficiency improvement and the global share of renewable energy would require, at minimum, more than 10 times that for universal energy access. Making it happen calls for engagement of far greater number of stakeholders, mobilization of much larger commitments and dramatically scaled-up actions on the ground toward the three objectives.
To act as a catalyst, the SE4ALL MPTF will have two clearly defined funding windows, namely SE4ALL Global window and Support for Country Level Technical Assistance/capacity building window.
a) Global Window
Under this Global window, the SE4ALL MPTF will support global activities of the initiative that will be undertaken by the SE4ALL Global Management Team under the direct guidance of its Chief Executive. In order to mobilise all stakeholders to deliver specific actions, the Chief Executive and the Global Management Team will focus on convening, liaison, facilitation, analysis, mobilizing, tracking and troubleshooting.
The team will facilitate implementation of actions, projects and programmes to be undertaken by a wide range of partners. The main task of the Global Management Team is to help these partners in undertaking operational functions. Such activities include overall initiative-level and team-level work planning; facilitating multi-stakeholder dialogue; facilitating gap analysis and support for the design of national action plans on sustainable energy for all; facilitating and synergizing country action and high-impact opportunities; leveraging knowledge management for operational actions and vice-versa; undertaking communications and civic engagements; ensuring monitoring, reporting and accountability; mobilising partnerships and resources; and undertaking advocacy and related engagements related to global/regional/country level political dialogues. In addition, the SE4ALL MPTF may also support the Global Management Team in the development and coordination of high-impact opportunities to the point where they become fully operational.
b) Country Level Technical Assistance and Capacity Building Window
Under this window, the SE4ALL MPTF provides seed funding for country-level catalytic activities related to technical assistance and capacity building, based on national ownership, in-country demand, and where relevant, through the UN Resident Coordinators, UN organisations, international development organisations, and other relevant partners. Accelerating country action is a critical success measure for the overall initiative, which seeks to engage all countries in activities to achieve the three objectives. In this context, where deemed appropriate, the SE4ALL MPTF may provide limited funding to initiate and facilitate technical assistance activities at the country level, including those related to capacity building, project development, and facilitating access to investment resources.
The SE4ALL MPTF will have a governance arrangement that draws on the established governance structure of the SE4ALL initiative. The functions specific to the SE4ALL MPTF governance are described below.
The Advisory Board for the SE4ALL Initiative is co-chaired by the Secretary General and the President of the World Bank. Its membership includes key stakeholders in the energy sector including actors from governments, the private sector, civil society, International Financial Institutions, UN organisations and governments. They are appointed by the Secretary-General for a period of 2 years. The Advisory Board for the SE4ALL Initiative will set overall strategic direction for the initiative. With regards to the SE4ALL MPTF, the Advisory Board will, when and as needed, provide strategic advice and review its performance and results.
The Executive Committee for the initiative, also appointed by the Secretary-General in consultation with the President of the World Bank for a period of 2 years, is responsible for providing operational oversight of the Chief Executive including the review, approval and monitoring of the initiative’s overall Work Plan and its budget. The Executive Committee will report to the Co-Chairs of the Advisory Board. It will be led by a chairperson and consist of representatives from the private sector, civil society, International Financial Institutions, UN organisations and governments.
With regards to the SE4ALL MPTF, the Executive Committee will:
The Chief Executive will be responsible for planning, managing and implementation of the initiative, including the development of the overall Work Plan to achieve its ambitious objectives. The Chief Executive will establish and direct a Global Management Team to coordinate and facilitate the initiative. The Chief Executive, appointed by the Secretary-General, will report to the Secretary-General and be accountable to the Executive Committee in terms of operational aspects of the initiative.
In regards to the SE4ALL MPTF, the Chief Executive will:
i) review the draft fund allocation proposals in light of the established procedures; and
ii) provide recommendations to the Chief Executive to inform his/her decision making.
Global Management Team
The Global Management Team will help the Chief Executive in undertaking all aspects of the work, by working closely with the Administrative Agent, as appropriate. This includes preparing necessary materials, documents, fund allocation proposals, and meetings required for the Chief Executive and the Programme Review Committee. The Global Management Team will work with the Administrate Agent to ensure that the decisions of the Chief Executive, and where applicable, those of the Executive Committee, are executed smoothly.
Recipient Organizations include those United Nations Organizations, international organisations, and similar institutions that have competence in working with energy issues, and have signed a Memorandum of Understanding with UNDP’s MPTF Office as Administrative Agent.
Each Recipient Organization shall assume full programmatic and financial accountability for the funds disbursed to it by the Administrative Agent. Each Recipient Organization shall establish a separate ledger account for the receipt and administration of the funds disbursed to it by the Administrative Agent.
Indirect costs of the Recipient Organizations recovered through programme support costs will be limited up to 7%.
The SE4ALL MPTF will be administered by UNDP, through its MPTF Office. The MPTF Office, as the Administrative Agent, is the appointed interface between the Recipient Organizations and the Contributors. UNDP’s accountability as the Administrative Agent is set out in the policy “UNDP’s Accountability when acting as Administrative Agent in MPTFs and JPs using the pass-through fund management modality”
The MPTF Office administers SE4ALL MPTF resources in accordance with UNDP financial regulations and rules and the TOR of the SE4ALL MPTF.
Participating Organizations are required to submit final year-end expenditures by April 30 in the following year; Interim expenditure figures are submitted on a voluntary basis and therefore current year figures are not final until the year-end expenditures have been submitted.
Funds with Administrative Agent
Funds with Participating Organizations
For Policy and Programme Issues
For Fund Administrative Agent Issues