EEAP Panel urges thinking beyond silos to break gridlock and make progress

By Michael Reid

EEAP Panel urges that we think beyond silos to break the gridlock and make progress in energy efficiency and sustainable development.

The Bangkok 2017 conference included a panel discussing the role of energy efficiency in environmental, economic, and social development. The panel opened a conversation to explore the ‘indivisible whole’ that is prompted by the IEA’s Multiple Benefits of Energy Efficiency (MBEE) framework and the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). Brian Motherway, International Energy Agency (IEA) Edward Vine, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley, CA, USA Fabian Kreuzer, ESCAP United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific Mary O’Neill, Office of Environment and Heritage NSW, Australia “Energy efficiency can and should play a much greater role in our economic and social development. So how do we convince governments to prioritise energy efficiency policies and programmes to drive investment across our economies?” Brian Motherway “Intersectorality is very difficult to evaluate and for most agencies a low priority. The SDGs open up a completely new world of evaluation and challenges. Evaluators will need to evaluate the possible uneven distribution of burdens as a result of energy saving in households. For example, if gender impacts are not evaluated, they are unlikely to be given any attention, this is also true for the vulnerable & excluded. We need to think beyond silos; instead connecting and interrelating interventions, examining integration, alignment, and coherence across sectoral specializations and across SDGs. Connecting the local with the global, and the global with the local. Different kinds of organizations need to work together on an integrated evaluation.” Ed Vine “Working in this way prompts a broader understanding of the system and context in which interventions are taking place, engaging those involved in a wider story of social and economic development. The interdependent nature of program impacts make it difficult to measure any one impact without examining the whole suite of impacts, both positive and negative, and their inter-relationships Implementation is challenging and requires new leadership thinking and competencies as the operating context, both internal and external is ‘hard wired’ to resist collaboration and encourages working in silos.” Mary O’Neill