The International Energy Agency today announced that more high-profile energy and climate figures from around the world – including government ministers and civil society leaders – have become members of its Global Commission on People-Centred Clean Energy Transitions, which will hold its first meeting on 15 March.
Headed by Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen of Denmark, the Global Commission – also known as Our Inclusive Energy Future – will examine ways to ensure people are at the centre of clean energy transitions worldwide. It was convened by Fatih Birol, the IEA Executive Director, and is chaired by Dan Jørgensen, Denmark’s Minister of Climate, Energy and Utilities, and co-chaired by Sophie Gladima, Senegalese Minister of Petroleum and Energy.
The prominent government figures who have joined the Commission since it was first launched in late January are Roberto Cingolani, Italian Minister for Ecological Transition; Leonore Gewessler, Minister of Climate Action, Environment, Energy, Mobility, Innovation and Technology, Austria; Hiroshi Kajiyama, Japanese Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry; Michał Kurtyka, Polish Minister of Climate and Environment; Joe Manchin, US Senator and Chairman of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources; Kadri Simson, European Commissioner for Energy; and Simonetta Sommaruga, Swiss Federal Councillor for Environment, Transport, Energy and Communications.
The leading civil society representatives who have become members are Christiana Figueres, Founding Partner of Global Optimism Group and former Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change; and Beniamin Strzelecki and Chiagozie Udeh, Global Focal Points for the SDG 7 Youth Constituency. The full list of all 26 members to date is available below. The commission will provide key recommendations as an input to COP26 in Glasgow in November.
“Clean energy transitions will affect people’s livelihoods. They will offer new careers and create new jobs – but they will also affect workers and communities that are reliant on industries and fuels that are set to decline,” said Dr Birol, the IEA Executive Director. “I’m extremely glad that such a diverse and influential group of leaders from government and civil society worldwide have come together in the Global Commission to address these critical issues. Clean energy transitions will fail if they are not focused on people.”
As countries seek to advance their shifts to clean energy technologies, the success of these efforts will rest on enabling citizens to benefit from the opportunities and navigate the disruptions. This includes social and economic impacts on individuals and communities, as well as issues of affordability and fairness.
Our Inclusive Energy Future will explore these questions in depth, taking into account the need to see people as active participants in clean energy transitions – in collective decision-making and through individual actions and behaviours. Equity and inclusion issues will also be examined, including gender equality.