The Vienna Energy Forum (VEF) is a biennial, global and multi-stakeholder forum with a mandate of exploring 21st century developmental challenges from the perspective of sustainable energy and providing a platform for debate on practical solutions to these challenges. Given that the complex issues connected to sustainable energy need to be addressed in a holistic manner, the VEF brings together all sectors of society and participants from all over the world, thereby paving the way for tangible partnerships on the ground.
The VEF 2015 took place from the 18th to the 20th of June (2015) in Vienna, only a few months before the Sustainable Development Goals Summit in New York and the UNFCCC Conference of the Parties (COP21) in Paris. By emphasizing the multiple benefits of the Post-2015 Development and the Climate Agenda and by showcasing best practices and actions on the ground, the VEF 2015 aims at contributing to both.
The thematic focus of the VEF 2015 was “Sustainable Energy for Inclusive Development” with emphasis on the multiple benefits of the Post-2015 Development and the Climate Agenda and on showcasing best practices and actions on the ground. Taking place in the run up to the Special Summit on Sustainable Development in New York and the UNFCCC Conference of the Parties (COP21) in Paris, the VEF generated concrete inputs for the anchoring of sustainable energy for inclusive development in the Post-2015 Development Agenda and for the successful conclusion of a comprehensive and effective climate agreement.
June 19th (Friday) @ 17:00-18:15
On June 19th, the SLoCaT Partnership Secretary General Cornie Huizenga facilitated a parallel session on sustainable transport. This session focused on the development of sustainable transport, in particular with view towards an urbanized world, as by 2025, the planet will have 37 megacities (cities with a population of over 10 million) and by 2030, up to 60% of the world population will live in cities. This accelerated urbanization trend creates major challenges in many sectors from an environmental, social, and economic point of view.
Mobility is a key issue in cities, and therefore, the transport sector is at the crossroads of various city issues: the most important ones being economic competitiveness and attractiveness, energy security, and social equity. Sustainable transport is vital for maintaining a high air quality, reducing energy-use and greenhouse gas emissions, and enabling inhabitants to commute easily and according to their requirements. This requires policy-makers and transport planners to understand and incorporate the varying transport needs of women, men, and youth into policy frameworks.
Specifically, this session explored the different tools to improve transportation, including standards to promote fuel efficiency, urban planning, public policies to ease traffic (zones with limited speed, parking pricing, etc.), development of public transportation, mechanisms to improve urban planning in existing cities, and others. The session, consequently addressed policy frameworks for such a shift, including how fuel-inefficient vehicles can be phased-out and highlight the potential, and also barriers, to the widespread adoption of electric vehicles in today’s cities.
June 18, 2015 to June 20, 2015
Hofburg Palace, Vienna, Austria