The challenge

Urban areas require an uninterrupted supply of energy, consuming 75% of global primary energy. While minimizing the ecological footprint of cities, energy distribution needs to become sustainable, more inclusive and fair to foster universal development.

Increasing population growth, rapid urbanization and expanding economic development are putting pressure on limited energy which annual demand growth is around 7 % developing countries, while the supply remains stable. Hence a mismatch between the supply and demand and frequent power rationing in cities.

Related Sustainable Development Goals

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Donors and partners

UN-Habitat works with other UN and development agencies under the UN-Energy umbrella alongside with UNIDO, UN-Environment, UNECE, WHO, FAO, SE4ALL, World Bank etc to promote energy access, energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies deployment.  UN-Habitat comparative advantage focusses on the promotion of sustainable energy use in cities. UN-Habitat lead the urban energy sector by providing advices, policy reforms and energy solution for sustainable urbanization.

UN-Habitat works with civil society organizations to reach out to the urban poor and address their energy concerns. We conduct joint training on affordable and clean energy system for lighting and cooking. UN-Habitat works with local government on complex energy and waste management issues. In fact we are assisting the Kajiado county in Kenya in developing their waste to energy plan where municipal waste is treated as a resource and converted into recyclable products and electricity for productive use.

Our collaboration with the Global Covenant of Mayor for Climate and Energy aims at helping municipalities to develop the energy and climate action plans. This help local government to better plan their development project and building their resilience. UN-Habitat collaborates with the academia fraternity to conduct research on urban energy and to develop tools, guidebooks and other training materials to promote the energy transition and sustainable building and urbanization.

Our Experts

Vincent Kitio
Unit leader
Urban Energy Unit, Urban Basic Services Branch
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