Boosting Rural Energy Development to Combat Poverty: UNDP Fo
BEIJING, Nov. 23 /Xinhua-PRNewswire/ -- Supported by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in China, the State Council Energy Leading Group is drafting a new rural energy strategy in China, to be released early 2008, to establish a vision for future rural energy development and increase access of the poor to sustainable energy.
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This was revealed today at the International Conference of Rural Energy Development in China, jointly organized by UNDP and the Office of the State Council Energy Leading Group. Rural energy specialists from both developed and developing countries including USA, Bolivia, Brazil, India, South Africa, and Thailand exchanged best practices and visions in fostering rural energy security in the developing worlAAAAAAAAA> "Not only is China's rural energy challenges an issue of energy, but an issue of development as well," said Subinay Nandy, UNDP Country Director in China. "Increasing demand for rural energy and the challenge to cope with climate change have brought issues of sustainable energy development to the top of the national policy agenda in China."
"Stable energy supply is critical for poverty alleviation in developing countries. Clean energy is the optimal way to develop without exacerbating air pollution and global warming," Nandy added. "UNDP is committed to assisting the government in integrating sustainable energy solutions into rural planning through technical assistance, policy recommendations and capacity building".
A newly-released UNDP Report: "Overcoming Vulnerability to Rising Oil Prices" was also introduced during the conference. The report looks at renewable energy technologies such as small hydro plants, wind turbines, solar panels, and stoves burning ‘biomass'.
Rural energy options that a few years ago might have seemed futuristic are now entering the mainstream. As Nandita Mongia from UNDP Regional Centre in Bankok said, "If these are futuristic, then the future has already arriveAAAAAAAAA> The Report points out that renewable sources bring some of their greatest benefits to off-grid remote rural areas where people often have to rely on diesel or gasoline-powered generators, because they can get much cheaper electricity from for example, small hydro schemes and solar home systems for lighting.
UNDP fosters human development to empower women and men to build better lives in China. As the UN's development network, UNDP draws on a world of experience to assist China in developing its own solutions to the country's development challenges. Through partnerships and innovation, UNDP works to achieve the Millennium Development Goals and an equitable Xiao Kang society by reducing poverty, strengthening the rule of law, promoting environmental sustainability, and fighting HIV/AIDS. http://www.undp.org.cn .