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International renewable energy agency launched

3 November 2008 – At a conference attended by 51 interntional governments, the statutes of an International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) were agreed recently.

Solar power plantsIRENA will promote the utilisation of renewable energy such as wind energy by providing accurate information about these key technologies.

The signing of the founding treaty is scheduled for 26 January 2009 in Bonn/Germany.

In a press release sent out recently, World Wind Energy Association (WWEA) president Dr Anil Kane said:

“Renewable energies are the key to the current three global crises: to the energy crisis by securing access to affordable domestic energy everywhere, the climate crisis by providing emission-free energy and the finance crisis by offering low-risk investment opportunities."

"The world urgently needs such an independent international authority providing unbiased information about renewable energy. We are very glad that such a breakthrough has now been achieved and congratulate the involved governments on the progress. At the same time we expect that IRENA will closely cooperate with the renewable energy sector worldwide."

According to WWEA Secretary General Stefan Gsänger: “The wind sector worldwide saw in the past ten years average annual growth rates of 30 %, reaching today a total installed capacity of more than 110 000MW and employing worldwide already more than 400 000 people.

"It has the potential of becoming the world’s largest industry, bigger than the car industry today. 75 % of the total wind capacity is at the moment still concentrated in six countries: Germany, USA, Spain, India, China and Denmark. One key task for IRENA will be to transfer the know-how from these leading countries to all other countries so that they can also start implementing wind power utilisation on a large scale and benefit from its advantages immediately. We cannot afford any further delay in shifting towards worldwide energy supply fully based on renewable energy. IRENA will be a decisive step forward.”