The June newsletter from Project Gaia featuring updates from Rio+20, the 2012 UN World Environment Day and Gaia's selection as a 2012 National Energy Globe Award Winner.
Project Gaia team members from the US and Brazil joined the 50,000 individuals from government, finance and civil society at the 2012 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development – Rio + 20. PGI joined the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves and others to push forward the important message of the UN-led Year of Sustainable Energy for All (SE4All).
PGI Executive Director Harry Stokes served as a panelist on the energy-themed, high-level Sustainable Development Dialogue along with Sheila Oparaocha of the gender and energy network ENERGIA, and others. Project Gaia also participated as a panelist on the Global Bioenergy Partnership (GBEP) Seminar on Providing Energy Access for Sustainable Development, where Mr. Stokes spoke from an implementer’s perspective of the potential to harness renewable bioenergy for household use and beyond.
Project Gaia joined the Danish biotech company Novozymes in promoting the dialogue on integrating food and energy to sustainably harness the potential of bioethanol to meet energy demand around the world. The Rio + 20 conference served as a platform for Project Gaia, CleanStar Mozambique and others to share their best practices and promote long-term, truly renewable solutions to the urgent energy demand in the developing world. PGI also joined the discussions led by ENERGIA and WEDO and others, contributing to the dialogue on women’s role in climate change and sustainable development.
Project Gaia participated in the Annual World Environment Day (WED) celebration at the UNHCR headquarters in Geneva Switzerland. The 2012 WED carried the theme of Green Economy, and aimed to sensitize communities on environmental protection issues and raise awareness on environmental risks. Gaia and UNHCR presented their joint ethanol stove and fuel program operating in the Jijiga camps in Eastern Ethiopia, including a visual display (below) and stove demonstration. The event attracted the participation of HCR and other UN staff. Elsewhere on UNHCR field sites, activities included plantation of seedlings and cleaning campaigns in and around various refugee camps.
Gaia Association Ethiopia has been selected for the second time as an Energy Globe Award National Winner. The 2012 National Energy Globe Award was presented to 151 nations implementing the best sustainable practices. Gaia Association’s ethanol cookstove and fuel program in the UNHCR Jijiga camps was among the projects honored on June 5,th concurrent with the UN World Environment Day.
To see the Gaia Association and other project profiles, visit the Energy Globe website and select your country.
Project Gaia participated in a two-day conference focusing on leveraging public private partnerships to develop rural and agricultural markets. The PGI session, “Linking Agriculture to Household Energy Demand; A Ready Market of Three Billion,” stressed the importance of a sustainable relationship between energy and agriculture into the discourse. As a cross-cutting initiative, Project Gaia shared with agriculture experts, donors and multi-national companies its strategy of small-scale ethanol production which is currently being implemented by PGI in Ethiopia, Nigeria and Haiti and in Mozambique by CleanStar Mozambique. The event was sponsored by USAID, IDB, GIZ, Mercy Corps and others.
Click here to access the PGI presentation and learn more about how investing in small-scale ethanol production adds value to agricultural markets and makes significant impact on public health and the environment.