Video of the Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), Christiana Figueres, speaking at IIED's 2012 Barbara Ward Lecture. The Introduction is by Camilla Toulmin, IIED’s Director.
All sorts of sustainable energy initiatives across the world are providing solutions to local energy problems. But how can these be scaled up to reach billions of people and really tackle the big issues of climate change and energy access for all?
This was the question on everyone’s lips at the Ashden Awards conference last week. And there was a lot to learn from the five international finalists. In a series of films, presentations and discussions each finalist shared their experience of creating new technologies, innovative business models and inspirational marketing initiatives to find solutions that benefit the environment and improve livelihoods. And, despite working against a backdrop of financial limitations and unsupportive policy environments, they are all managing to scale up at a fantastic rate.
For much of the developing world producing clean energy that also mitigates carbon emissions is a very low priority. After all, why should countries that haven't significantly contributed to climate change worry about reducing their relatively tiny carbon emissions? In any case who would pay for it all?
Business models for sustainable development aim to deliver economic, social and environmental benefits – the three pillars of sustainable development – through core business activities.
IIED's work on business models for sustainable development cuts across several areas of research including forestry, food and agriculture, energy and ICTs. Our research to date has identified a number of factors that contribute to the success of business models for sustainable development.