Kenya to increase use of renewable energy

February 21, 2011 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 21- The government is committed to reducing carbon gas emissions through the use of various renewable forms of energy, President Mwai Kibaki has said.

He pointed out that currently, large scale investments in geothermal and wind energy production programmes and forestry restoration programmes are underway in the country.

"The green climate funding that was generally agreed to and the global environment facility should support developing countries in transitioning towards green growth," he stated during the opening of the 26th Session of the Governing Council of the United Nations Environment Programme and the Global Environment Ministerial Forum.

The President further said that a lot of effort was being exerted in tackling electronic waste in the country.

"My government has also supported a draft decision on electronic waste. We believe that a harmonised approach beginning with a clear assessment of the challenge would be a good start," he stated.

He described the gathering as one of the strongest in articulating that environmental sustainability can act as a beacon of hope to the peoples of the world, who look up to UNEP and the Global Ministerial Environment Forum. 

"Indeed the people look up to this forum to provide the necessary leadership and guidance in the ever increasing challenges of the global environment," he said.

He observed that since the last meeting of the UNEP Governing Council, the world has faced numerous catastrophes linked to environmental degradation. 

"These include unprecedented floods, widespread wildfires and devastating droughts. These challenges continue to negatively impact on our development goals.  It is however encouraging that during the past year, both in Nagoya and Cancun, the hopes of the world were rekindled by agreements that underlined commitments towards collective action," he stated.

He stressed the need for various countries to renew their commitments to a sustainable environmental agenda.

"I trust that as you undertake deliberations, the spirit of Nagoya and Cancun will be carried forward as the world prepares for the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development next year," he said.

He pointed out that the environmental challenges the world is currently facing underscore the continued importance and relevance of UNEP.

"My government fully supports the outcomes from the Helsinki meeting. We urge all parties to support the strengthening of environmental governance through reforms that will elevate UNEP in Nairobi to the status of other UN agencies on social and economic pillars," he said. "The political momentum should be sustained in order to conclude the debate."

He said that the government fully supports the international environmental governance process and the incremental steps already being undertaken by UNEP. 

He affirmed that it remained fully committed to continue playing its role as host to UNEP and the entire UN fraternity.

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