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Cooperation between Belarus and its international partners in the sphere of renewable energy

The renewable energy capacity building is one of major governmental objectives for the Republic of Belarus. There are quite a few solid results achieved in the sphere. At the same time, there is a long way to go so as renewable energy is used at full capacity.

Belarus believes that more multilateral cooperation in the sphere is important to attain such goal.
Belarus joined the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) in February 2009, thus taking the first step towards the goal. The country pins its hopes on this newly founded specialized international organization expected to become a global platform for sharing experience in the sphere of new and renewable energy sources and increasing the energy efficiency of economies.
Belarus believes it can contribute to organization’s development by implementing Agency-related joint projects on renewable energy as well as creating together with IRENA an International Renewable Energy Laboratory at the Energy Institute of the National Academy of Sciences in Belarus. The idea about the laboratory is unique. Because of our country’s mild climate, the laboratory will provide exploratory facilities for testing the efficiency of various devices related to renewable energy sources.
Forming a UN mechanism to make advanced technologies for new and renewable sources of energy readily available for developing countries and countries in transition
The idea that the key role in post-crisis development of the global economy should be played by certain international social and economic development drivers was advanced by Belarus during the 64th and 65th UN General Assembly sessions. It was also mentioned that the use of environment-friendly or “green” technologies will become one of the most important “engines”. This fact explains why the governments of the key powers committed themselves to implementing a number of over $180bn-worth programs on encouraging national economies to make more input into crisis management and sustainable energy. The US and China are spearheading efforts to underpin sustainable environment-friendly energy. In 2008,
the European Union and the US started generating more energy from renewable sources rather than from traditional.
Such steps are highly important. The risk that carbon dioxide emission caused by energy consumption will reach 62 Gigatons by 2050 is high. This fact was indicated in the 2009 UN Secretary General report on the Promotion of New and Renewable Sources of Energy. The global temperature can increase by 6 °C because of such intensive carbon dioxide emission.
The high potential of alternative energy is another reason for the international community to advance new and renewable sources of energy. The renewable energy generating plants are capable of producing 15-20 times more energy than the humankind will consume in 2050. The most important strategic objectives for the international community are providing the growing global economy with sustainable energy sources and minimizing impact on the environment.
However, designing new and renewable energy technologies can become rather expensive in practice. Only few states can afford it at the moment. There is a risk of tension in the relations between industrially developed and developing countries, unless the international community takes steps to advance such technologies in the entire world. According to specialists, the aggregate energy demand in the OECD non-member countries is expected to increase by 73% by 2030, while in industrially developed countries this index will only rise by 15%.
Taking all these facts into consideration, Belarus made a motion during the 62nd UN General Assembly session in 2007. Belarus proposed to create a global strategy of transferring new and renewable energy technologies to developing countries and countries in transition, i.e. creating a clear plan of coordinated actions for the key global players rather than building a new bureaucratic structure.
Topical debates initiated by Belarus and 17 other countries on the problem were held by the UN General Assembly in June 2009. The most interesting and practicable proposals related to the global strategy were discussed during the debates. Fresh ideas were voiced and further discussed at the 64th UN General Assembly session in 2009.
UN General Assembly Resolution 64/206 on “Promotion of new and renewable sources of energy” was adopted on December 21, 2009, reflecting the need to further analyze the accessibility of new and renewable energy advanced technologies. It is also noted that the analysis of motions made by certain countries as well as conclusions and proposals on the topic should be included in the UN Secretary General report on the global use of new and renewable energy to be made at the 66th UN General Assembly session in September 2011.
The 65th UN General Assembly session on progress towards achieving internationally agreed Millennium Development Goals was held in 2010. Belarus called for more international cooperation in the energy sector so that a more substantial contribution to the global progress could be made towards achieving MDGs in the future.