New Delhi: With 1.4 billion people in the world still living without electricity, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) has joined its partner agencies in a call to provide modern energy services to all within the next 20 years.
"Achieving universal access to modern energy by 2030 is possible and can lift more than a billion people out of extreme energy poverty. The additional investment required is about $40 billion per year until 2030, less than three percent of total global energy investment," a statement quoting UNDP Associate Administrator Rebeca Grynspan said.
Grynspan was speaking at the three-day international energy forum in Vienna which began Tuesday.
According to the statement, 1.4 billion people are still without electricity access, and three billion use firewood and other biomass and coal as fuel for cooking and heating, causing indoor pollution and leading to diseases that kill two million people every year.
"We have to build a momentum for a global movement for universal energy access," said Grynspan. "We need to invest in capacity development to create enabling policy, regulatory frameworks and effective institutions and we must partner with the private sector and civil society that drives innovation, brings investments and creates jobs."
The UN General Assembly has designated 2012 "International Year for Sustainable Energy for All". Universal access is one of the key focus areas for a high-level summit in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in June next year.