Rural Access to Energy Services

Rural access to energy services is still considered a problem among impoverished rural communities which serves as a barrier to sustainable development everywhere. At the Global Conference on Rural Energy Access held on December 4-6, 2013 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, a number of commitments were made by UNDP, WHO, the United Alliance for Rural Electrification and several other stakeholders with the aim of bringing modern and reliable energy services to rural communities. The conference organized by UN DESA in collaboration with Sustainable Energy for All (SE4All), UN-Energy and the Economic Commission for Africa revolve around the central theme of the important role of access to energy services to enable sustainable development and eradicate poverty.

Participants from over 40 countries agreed that the lack of clean, affordable and reliable energy is at the heart of interconnected energy problems in energy poor areas. The discussions and recommendations centered around solutions and technologies aimed to bring energy to help improve the life of these rural communities. For a list of the complete discussion and recommendations, please visit the UN DESA Conference webpage.

For the complete text on please see the full article on Improving Sustainable Energy Access for Rural Areas at the Feature Section of the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN DESA) website.

End of OPEC

End of OPEC

Are we seeing the end of OPEC? It has been forty years since the Arab oil embargo took effect in 1973. This point in history triggered a period of change and turmoil.

After the United States provided support to Israel during the Yom Kippur War, a cartel of developing-world countries through the OPEC or Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries banned the sale of their oil to Israel’s allies and thereby set in motion geopolitical circumstances that eventually allowed them to wrest control over global oil production and pricing from the giant international oil companies — ushering in an era of significantly higher oil prices. The event was hailed at the time as the first major victory of “Third World” powers to bring the West to its knees. Designed in part to bring Arab populations their due after decades of colonialism, the embargo opened the floodgates for an unprecedented transfer of wealth out of America and Europe to the Middle East. Overnight, the largest segment of the global economy, the oil market, became politicized as never before in history.

To read the full article by Amy Myers Jaffe and Ed Morse, please visit the Foreign Policy webpage. To view the video of the interview of Shari Spiegel, Financing Development, please click this

Photo from the Robert Yarnall Richie Photograph Collection, Southern Methodist University, Central University Libraries, DeGolyer Library