The governmental Renewables 2004 Conference brought together more than 3,000 delegates and observers from 154 countries last week, 1-4 June, in the former German Bundestag in Bonn. The prelude was the Second World Renewable Energy Forum (29-31 March, 500 participants from all continents), organized by the World Council for Renewable Energy (WCRE) and EUROSOLAR. In addition, the German Bundestag invited parliamentarians from all over the world to the International Parliamentary Forum on Renewable Energy with more than 350 participants from around 80 countries.
Right before the governmental conference (www.renewables2004.de), the World Council for Renewable Energy (WCRE) passed at its independent Second World Renewable Energy Forum (www.world-renewable-energy-forum.org) a far reaching World Renewable Energy Agenda that gave an important stimulus for the global acceleration of Renewable Energy. More than 70 speakers from all regions of the world discussed such important issues as alternative fuel strategies, innovative finance strategies, ways toward a solar habitat, new institutional frameworks like establishing an International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA).
The international governmental conference resulted in a non-binding political declaration, policy recommendations and an international action plan. The action plan contains 165 self-binding commitments of some governments, NGOs, and companies to further extend their activities in promoting Renewable Energy. However, the governmental conference missed the chance to start a process that would finally lead a strong international institution for the dissemination for Renewable Energy far beyond just an informal network.
On June 2 more than 350 participants from around 80 countries gathered at the International Parliamentary Forum on Renewable Energy (www.ipf-renewables2004.de). The delegates of the International Parliamentary Forum came to further reaching conclusions than the Governmental Conference. In their final parliamentary resolution parliamentarians from all over the world e.g. called upon the governments to follow the results of the "Extractive Industry Report" of Prof. Salim to phase out fossil energy support by the World Bank and to establish Renewable Energy Development Banks. Most importantly, the parliamentarians followed the proposals of the World Council for Renewable Energy to call for the establishing of an International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA).
All parliamentarians are committed to seek the approval of their respective parliament to realize the strategies agreed on in the parliamentary resolution. Dr. Hermann Scheer MP, Chairman of the International Parliamentary Forum presented the results in the main plenary session of the Governmental conference.