This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.

September 22, 2010

UNEP: Clean Energy Investments can Help Meet Poverty Reduction Goals

Investing in clean energy is an essential part of meeting international goals to reduce poverty, according to a new report from the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). The report, "A Brief for Policymakers on the Green Economy and the Millennium Development Goals," released on September 20, asserts that the "green economy" and poverty reduction goals are inextricably intertwined. Focusing on the Millennium Development Goals, which include a goal to halve the number of people in extreme poverty by 2015, the UNEP report contends that a shift to a green economy will not only reduce environmental risks and ecological scarcities, but will also improve human well-being and lessen inequalities. For instance, solar power and efficient lighting can replace oil-based lighting sources, on which the "energy poor" in Africa spend about $17 billion per year. See the UNEP press release and reportPDF.