Ban welcomes important step forward towards Mali peace

In a statement released this afternoon, Mr. Ban’s spokesperson said the Secretary-General commended Malian stakeholders for “the progress achieved to date” and expressed his gratitude to both Algeria, for hosting the peace process, and members of the international community for their “dedicated efforts in support of the resolution of the conflict.”“The initialling on 1 March in Algiers of a draft agreement on peace and reconciliation in Mali by the Government of Mali and the Plateforme coalition of armed groups is an important step forward,” said the statement. “The political will and ownership of all Malian parties is essential for sustainable peace.”The Government in Mali has been seeking to restore stability and rebuild following a series of setbacks since early 2012, including a military coup d’état, renewed fighting between Government forces and Tuareg rebels, and the seizure of its northern territory by radical Islamists.Throughout much of this time, Mali’s north has remained restive and, in recent months, the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission (MINUSMA) and its “blue helmets” have come under repeated violent attack.In addition, the country has been consumed by a series of humanitarian crises. Addressing journalists in Geneva last week, Jens Laerke, from the UN’s Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), noted that at the peak of the crisis, more than 500,000 people had left the north of Mali to seek refuge in the south or in neighbouring countries. Although nearly 400,000 had already returned, they continued to face challenges in restarting their lives as communities had become more vulnerable, livelihoods had deteriorated, and social services were working only partially, especially in rural areas.At the same time, Mali continued to face a high level of food insecurity and malnutrition – a problem affecting countries throughout Africa’s Sahel region. According to UN estimates, nearly 2.6 million people in Mali, or 15 per cent of the total population, will suffer from food insecurity this year while more than one in 10 children would be affected by acute malnutrition.The UN spokesperson declared the Organization’s continued commitment to supporting Malians in their search for peace, security, justice and development through the “full and timely implementation of a future agreement” and said Mr. Ban called on all parties “to engage to reach a final settlement.” Also today, the Secretary-General announced the appointment of Major General Michael Lollesgard of Denmark as the new MINUSMA Force Commander.Mr. Lollesgard succeeds Major General Jean Bosco Kazura of Rwanda to whom Mr. Ban expressed his gratitude for his “dedicated and exemplary service during his tenure.”According to the UN spokesperson’s office, Mr. Lollesgard brings to his new role 30 years of national and international experience including deployments in peace support operations in the Balkans and Iraq. read more

World energy use projected to grow 44 between 2006 and 2030

first_imgIn the IEO2009 reference case, which does not include specific policies to limit greenhouse gas emissions, energy-related carbon dioxide emissions are projected to rise from 29,100 Mt in 2005 to 40,400 Mt in 2030-an increase of 39%. With strong economic growth and continued heavy reliance on fossil fuels expected, much of the increase in carbon dioxide emissions is projected to occur among the developing nations of the world, especially in Asia.The full report can be found on EIA’s web site at: Worldwide, industrial energy consumption is expected to grow from 175 quadrillion Btu in 2006 to 246 quadrillion Btu in 2030. Industrial energy demand varies across regions and countries of the world, based on levels and mixes of economic activity and technological development, among other factors. About 94% of the world increase in industrial sector energy consumption is projected to occur in the emerging economies, where-driven by rapid economic growth-industrial energy consumption grows at an average annual rate of  2.1% in the reference case. The key engines of growth in the projection are the so-called “BRIC” countries (Brazil, Russia, India, and China), which account for more than two-thirds of the developing world’s growth in industrial energy use through 2030. This 44% growth will be driven by strong long-term economic growth in the developing nations of the world, according to the reference case projection from the International Energy Outlook 2009 (IEO2009) released by the Energy Information Administration (EIA). The current global economic downturn will dampen world energy demand in the near term, as manufacturing and consumer demand for goods and services slows. However, with economic recovery anticipated to begin within the next 12 to 24 months, most nations are expected to see energy consumption growth at rates anticipated prior to the recession. Total world energy use rises from 472 quadrillion Btu in 2006 to 552 quadrillion Btu in 2015 and then to 678 quadrillion Btu in 2030.World oil prices have fallen sharply from their July 2008 high mark. As the world’s economies recover, higher world oil prices are assumed to return and to persist through 2030. In the IEO2009 reference case, world oil prices rise to $110/barrel (bbl) in 2015 (in real 2007 dollars) and $130/bbl in 2030. Total liquid fuels and other petroleum consumption in 2030 is projected to be 22 million bbl/d higher than the 2006 level of 85 million bbl/d. In the reference case, conventional oil supplies from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) contribute 8.2 million bbl/d to the total increase in world liquid fuels production, and conventional supplies from non-OPEC countries add another 3.4 bbl/d.In addition, unconventional resources (including biofuels, oil sands, extra-heavy oil, coal-to-liquids, and gas-to-liquids) from both non-OPEC and OPEC sources are expected to become increasingly competitive in the reference case. World production of unconventional resources, which totalled 3.1 bbl/d in 2006, increases to 13.4 million bbl/d in 2030 in the reference case, accounting for 13% of total world liquids supply in 2030.Recent experience demonstrates that world oil prices can be extremely volatile and, as a result, the IEO2009 includes three world oil price cases that span a very broad range in 2030, from $50/bbl (in 2007 dollars) in the low price case to $200/bbl in the high price case. These price paths translate to a fairly broad range of potential supply outlooks in 2030, ranging from 90 million bbl/d in the high price case to 120 million bbl/d in the low price case (compared to 107 million bbl/d in the reference case)Other report highlights include:The rapid increase in world energy prices from 2003 to 2008, combined with concerns about the environmental consequences of greenhouse gas emissions, has led to  renewed interest in the development of alternatives to fossil fuels. Renewable energy is the fastest-growing source of world electricity generation in the IEO2009 reference case, supported by high prices for fossil fuels and by government incentives for the development of alternative energy sources. From 2006 to 2030, world renewable energy use for electricity generation grows by an average of 2.9% per year, and the renewable share of world electricity generation increases from 19% in 2006 to 21% in 2030. Hydropower and wind power are the major sources of incremental renewable electricity supply.last_img read more