Energy and environmental technology Environment

Posted July 1996

FAO collaboration with the International Energy Agency on renewable energy technologies


The International Energy Agency (IEA) invited FAO to participate in an IEA/OECD Workshop on National Programmes on Renewable Energy and the 29th Meeting of the IEA/OECD Working Party on Renewable Energy Technologies. Both meetings were held in Rome on 20-22 May 1996.

Based in Paris, the IEA promotes collaboration on energy technology and development among its members, which are the OECD countries. The IEA Energy technology Collaboration Programme provides the framework for experts to work on specific energy activities, providing benefits in terms of shared costs, pooling of resources and spreading risks of unproductive research topics. Its activities are set under simple contractual arrangements called Implementing Agreements, which provide the legal mechanism and the management structure for the participants. These Implementing Agreements, which are government-to-government arrangements, are managed by Executive Committees made up of experts nominated by the participating countries. They are monitored by the IEA Governing Board, the Committee on Energy Research and Technology, and by Working Parties on specific technology areas.

The Working Party on Renewable Energy Technologies is one of these. It is important to note that all resources to support the activities of these Working Parties are provided by the participant countries in the Implementation Agreements. There are currently 41 Implementing Agreements covering fossil fuel, renewable energies, energy efficiency, fusion and energy information centres. Besides these Implementing Agreements, the IEA Secretariat as such carries out activities in the renewable energy field, which are discussed by the Working Party. Various divisions of IEA\OECD are involved in these activities.

FAO was invited to participate as part of the IEA/OECD's policy to promote collaboration with non-OECD countries and with international agencies. FAO was represented by Gustavo Best, Senior Energy Coordinator of the Environment and Natural Resources Service. He presented an overview of FAO's energy activities, and highlighted potential areas for cooperation between FAO and IEA.


The following are some of the most relevant points presented and discussed at the meetings:

With regards to cooperation with FAO, the following points were discussed:


The contacts established with both IEA/OECD personnel and with individual members of the IEA Working Group on Renewable Energy Technologies will be pursued by FAO. The possibility, benefits and implications of joining Implementation Agreements as defined above will be assessed. The possibility of organizing a joint meeting in 1997 to exchange experiences in the topic of market consolidation strategies will be assessed.

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