Committee on Energy, 11th Session
ESCWA held the eleventh session of the Committee on Energy in Cairo from 14 to 16 May 2017. Under the patronage of His Excellency Dr. Mohamed Shaker, Minister of Electricity and Renewable Energy of the Arab Republic of Egypt, in the presence of the representatives of ESCWA countries members of the Committee. Representatives of LAS, the Regional Center for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (RCREEE), the Organization of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries (OAPEC), the African Energy Commission (AFREC) and the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), were also present as observers.
The 11th session was opened on the morning of Sunday, 14 May, with a speech of His Excellency the Egyptian Minister of Electricity and Renewable Energy, delivered on his behalf by Mr. Mohamed Mousa, First Under-Secretary for Research, Planning and Follow-up of authorities. While Ms. Roula Majdalani, Director of the Sustainable Development Policies Division, delivered a speech on behalf of the ESCWA Executive Secretariat. Later on, Acting Executive Secretary of ESCWA, Ms Khawla Mattar welcomed the participants and commended their work within the framework of the meetings of the Energy Committee.
The agenda of the eleventh session included several priority topics, including follow up on the recommendations formulated by the tenth session, progress made in the implementation of energy-related activities under the ESCWA programme of work between the tenth and eleventh sessions of the Committee, activities undertaken with Member States through the Technical cooperation program. Participants also reviewed technical documents on energy-related sustainable development goals, the water-energy nexus, the impact of shale oil and shale-gas on groundwater, in addition to Arab cooperation on tackling climate change and a review of the activities undertaken by ESCWA technology Center. In addition, a proposal was made by ESCWA to the establishment of an expert group on fossil fuels and it presented the proposed ESCWA programme of work for the biennium 2018-2019 in the field of energy.
Participants discussed the issues at hand, provided constructive comments, and exchanged mutual views. The interventions of Member States also emphasized the important and crucial role of energy in achieving sustainable development. The Committee later concluded with a set of recommendations, some of which addressed to Member States and others to ESCWA.
The Sustainable Development Policies Division also organized an Expert Group Meeting on 14-15 May as a parallel event on tracking progress towards sustainable energy- Horizon 2030 in the Arab region. A number of experts and consultants from the Arab region and some international institutions attended the meeting, in addition to the members of the ESCWA Committee on Energy and the invited observers.