WASHINGTON, DC - Today, U.S. Secretary of Energy Steven Chu invited energy ministers from across the Western Hemisphere to attend the Energy and Climate Ministerial of the Americas in Washington, DC on April 15-16, 2010. This Ministerial will bring energy leaders together to advance the goals of the Energy and Climate Partnership of the Americas, announced by President Obama in Trinidad and Tobago earlier this year.
"Our goal is simple: to advance our common objectives under the Energy and Climate Partnership with concrete programs that will benefit the people of the Americas," said Secretary Chu. "Cooperation and collaboration will be critical to our shared success. I hope we can take stock of our progress to date and launch new programs to promote low-carbon economic growth, improve energy security and end energy poverty."
The Ministerial will have two parts. The first day will be a meeting of representatives from government, civil society, industry, academia and international financial institutions. The second day will be a meeting among energy ministers. On both days, attendees will explore possible initiatives in areas such as energy efficiency, renewable energy, cleaner fossil fuels, and energy infrastructure, as tools to help fight climate change, promote energy security, and end energy poverty.
The Ministerial next year will build upon the progress made to date in promoting regional solutions to a range of shared energy challenges. In June, leaders from across the Americas came together with major energy corporations and other experts in Lima, Peru at the Americas Energy and Climate Symposium. The Symposium resulted in the announcement of concrete joint actions to improve energy efficiency, promote clean and renewable energy, and increase information sharing on best practices and past experiences.
These initiatives included a Low Carbon Communities Program that will assist countries in developing transformative energy efficiency and renewable energy programs to reduce the carbon footprint of urban communities throughout the region. Energy leaders have also developed a system of energy technology centers across the region that includes a Regional Energy Efficiency Center in conjunction with the Peruvian government, a Regional Wind Research Center supported by Mexico, a Regional Renewable Energy R&D Center with Chile, and a Brazilian-led program to improve the energy efficiency of low-income communities.