Publication // Discussion Paper: Sustainable Energy and Food Systems
This paper tackles issues related to the integration of sustainable energy in industry. It provides an introduction to the topic and highlights the key issues that will be addressed during eight virtual discussion sessions, to be held at monthly intervals starting from 14 October 2020, in anticipation of the Vienna Energy Forum in July 2021.
The Vienna Energy Forum (VEF)—to be held in 6-7 July 2021—is designed to facilitate a multisectorial, multi-stakeholder and inter-disciplinary dialogue on sustainable energy1 for inclusive development and productive capacities.
As preparations for the VEF 2021 progress, the VEF partners have assembled the VEF Virtual Series— a sequence of virtual consultations that will explore the pathways that stimulate demand and promote economic recovery in three end-use sectors: industry, food systems and products.
The Virtual Series have the overarching goal of progressing agreed recommendations and delivering policy briefs with action-oriented solutions in targeted locations. In this respect, it will launch three global programmes addressing the needs of developing countries and emerging economies, and unlocking opportunities to pursue the energy nexus within the three end-use sectors.
The outcomes of the consultations will feed key global events in 2021, including the Sustainable Energy Forum, the High-level Dialogue on Energy, the G20 Forum and the United Nations Climate Conference (COP26).
The sessions in the Food System Track will serve as a platform to discuss pathways to better align the energy transition with the food systems transformation, with a focus on opportunities in developing countries.
In order to incorporate issues of demand and efficiency improvements, the typical supply-driven approach to energy and agriculture must be shifted. Additionally, the achievement of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals calls for a holistic approach that integrates factors such as poverty alleviation, job creation, gender equality, climate mitigation and energy-food-water nexus. The VEF Virtual Series will lead the identification of critical issues and offer action-oriented solutions, that will be further analysed at the VEF 2021.
A discussion paper on sustainable energy and food systems was developed to:
- Provide an overview of the status of food systems in terms of synergies with sustainable energy, prominent barriers and the impact of COVID-19
- Identify priority countries that present opportunities to achieve successful outcomes;
- Identify priority focus areas: the barriers, enablers, issues or themes emerging as most relevant to achieving the intended outcomes;
- Explore key questions: the “smart” questions that can help identify and unlock the most impactful interventions; and
- Start to explore the nature of recommendations: the multiple intervention pathways that are available to countries looking to achieve sustainable energy-food system integration, given different capabilities and contexts.
Vienna Energy Forum, developed by the Department of Energy at the United Nations Industrial Development Organization
- Nexus Blog // Event Summary and Discussion Paper: Sustainable Energy and Food Systems Session 1
- VEF Virtual Series