Wednesday, July 22, 2009

UNEP calls for more investment in ''green'' economies

UNEP calls for more investment in ''green'' economies: "UNEP calls for more investment in ''green'' economies

The UN environmental agency (UNEP) Monday called on the wo rld's developed nations to invest massively in 'greening' their economies in ord e r to set a new path to prosperity.

A statement issued by UNEP quoted Paven Sukhdev, its project leader on Green Eco nomy Initiative, as saying 'countries should rethink economic models and target a t job growth.'

Sukhdev said 'jobs could be created in clean technology, renewable energy, susta inable agriculture and other conservation-based businesses.

'In greening the economy, there is a new path to prosperity, there are more jobs , clean and decent jobs and indeed there is a solution to persistent poverty,' h e said.

According to the UNEP official, the UN environmental agency has urged the G-20 c ountries to invest one third of the about US$ 2.5 trillion worth of planned stim u lus packages on 'greening' the world economy.

The development economist said 'the estimated US$ 750 billion of green investmen t, equal to about one per cent of current global GDP, could trigger significant,

multiple and potentially transformational returns.

'What we need today is investment, not in more of the same (with economic stimul us packages). We need today investments in greening the economies today and not t omorrow.

'So when I look at the G-20 nations and I look at US$ 2 trillion that are absolu tely essential for progress for the next generation,' Sukhdev said.

He said the funds would assist in powering the global economy out of recession a nd onto a green 21st century path.

Noting that Africa was recording several successes in terms of 'greening' the ec onomy, he cited Kenya, which despite progress being made in environmental conser v ation, was still experiencing destruction in parts of the country.

'Africa is an area and continent of many challenges. I am delighted to see some progress in many parts of Africa,'' he stressed.

'A total of around one per cent of global GDP - that is around US$ 750 billion i nvested in such greening initiatives over the next two years would provide the c r itical mass of investment needed to kick-start a 'green economy' across G-20 nat i ons,' Sukhdev said.

PANA recalled that last October, UNEP and leading economists announced the Green Economy Initiative (GEI) to bring about tomorrow's economy today.

Together with a number of UN sister organisations, the GEI motivate governments and businesses to significantly increase investment in the environment as a new e ngine for economic growth, job creation and poverty reduction in the 21st centur y .

The GEI has three key elements, which include the Green Economy report that prov ides an overview, analysis and synthesis of how public policy can help markets a c celerate the transition towards a green economy.

Others are the Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity, a project on assessing the economics of nature and its opportunities and the Green Jobs report, release d in September 2008 that evaluated employment trends from greening."

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