IKEA, Rockefeller Foundation to set up US$1bn initiative to catalyse investments in renewable energy

AdobeStock 278385140The IKEA Foundation and The Rockefeller Foundation has announced that they will join forces to set up a US$1bn global platform to fight climate change and energy poverty

The platform aims to reduce one billion tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions and to empower one billion people with distributed renewable energy (DRE). This is renewable energy generated from sources such as mini-grid and off-grid solutions, located near the point of use, rather than centralised sources like power plants. The new global platform will oversee the organisations’ combined matching funds. It also aims to deliver clean and reliable power to the 800 million people worldwide who lack electricity, and a further 2.8 billion who have unreliable access. It will be run as a public charity to manage a concerted effort to rapidly channel development funds to life-changing projects on the ground.

While funding to support energy transition has increased at a global level, many organisations struggle to identify viable, investment-ready projects. As a result, many emerging economies still depend on unreliable and polluting energy sources. By creating a platform to deploy catalytic capital more efficiently, and at scale that supports the expansion of local renewable energy projects, governments will be better able to achieve renewable electrification and development targets.

Per Heggenes, CEO of IKEA Foundation, said, “If global energy consumption doesn’t change from fossil fuels to renewable energy, we will not meet the Paris Agreement ambitions and millions of families will be left behind in poverty. We need to be honest and recognise that the current approach is not delivering the impact the world needs in the time that we have,” 

“Our collective ambition is to create a platform that supports renewable energy programmes which can deliver greenhouse gas reductions fast and efficiently and accelerate the energy transition. We need to replace polluting sources of energy with renewable ones, provide access to energy to communities and unlock further funding for sustainable models. Ultimately, we aim to unite countries and communities in urgent action to tackle the climate crisis, reduce one billion tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions and, by doing so, we hope to positively impact the lives of one billion people,” Per added.

Dr Rajiv J. Shah, president of The Rockefeller Foundation, commented, “Millions of lives and trillions of dollars have been lost to Covid 19, forcing people back into poverty after decades of progress. The effects of the climate crisis will make this even worse, which is why we must invest now to reverse this downward spiral.” 

“Big, bold, and pioneering collaboration and investment is required not only for the short term, but also the long term, to galvanize a better future. That is why we are announcing our largest commitment to date and joining forces with IKEA Foundation to double that investment. Our partnership will unlock the financing and resources that are essential to provide clean, reliable electricity that improves the lives and livelihoods of people everywhere,” Shah said.   

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