KUCHING (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Governments and organisations need to get serious about investing in renewable energy to reduce carbon emissions and mitigate climate change, says Tan Sri Michelle Yeoh.
The Malaysian actress said renewable energy was commercially viable, cost-competitive and could be deployed on a large scale.
As such, it solved the "trilemma" of achieving sustainable, reliable and affordable energy in line with Goal 7 of the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals.
"However, current global energy investments are falling short of the mark."
"At US$514 billion (S$699 billion) a year, the current investments are a far cry from the US$1.3 to US$1.4 trillion needed to achieve SDG 7 - access to affordable, clean energy for all by 2030," Yeoh said.
Yeoh was speaking at the inaugural Sustainability and Renewable Energy Forum organised by Sarawak Energy here on Tuesday (Dec 10) in her role as a United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) goodwill ambassador.
Yeoh said clean energy investments made sense because they were cheaper than the cost of climate change, created sustainable jobs and improved people's lives and health.
"And it protects the environment and reduces our greenhouse gas emissions. It is time to raise the bar, invest in the global energy transition, and scale up renewable energy globally."
"Reaching a zero-carbon, climate-resilient future may not be easy, but it is necessary and it is possible," she said.
Yeoh also said that the UNDP was currently implementing nearly 200 sustainable energy projects in more than 100 countries to achieve SDG 7.
It has also mobilised over US$1 billion in grant financing in the last two decades.
"Affordable, reliable, and sustainable energy for all is vital to ending poverty, protecting the planet and ensuring that all people can enjoy peace and prosperity by the year 2030."
"This also means increasing energy efficiency and increasing the share of renewable energy in the global energy mix," she said.