EUROSOLAR has been the main driving force behind the establishment of an International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA).
IRENA was established on 26 January 2009 in Bonn/Germany.
Mandated by governments worldwide, IRENA will become the main driving force in promoting a rapid transition towards the widespread and sustainable use of renewable energy worldwide.
As the global voice for renewable energy, IRENA will provide practical advice and support for both industrialised and developing countries, help them improve their regulatory frameworks and build capacity. The agency will facilitate access to all relevant information including reliable data on the potential of renewable energy, best practices, effective financial mechanisms and state-of-the-art technological expertise.
In 2001 EUROSOLAR and the WCRE hosted the International Impulse Conference for the Creation of IRENA "Promoting Global Transfer Activities for Renewable Energy". 400 participants from countries all over the world adopted a final Memorandum on IRENA.
In 2004 the International Parliamentary Forum on Renewable Energies, chaired by EUROSOLAR president and WCRE chairman Hermann Scheer, with 300 members of parliament from 70 countries present called for the establishment of IRENA.
The German Government has, in his coalition agreement dating from 2005, made the IRENA initiative its own. Two resolutions of the German Parliament supported the establishment of IRENA in 2003 and 2008.
Please find a chronology of past activities to promote IRENA here.
Discussions conducted with governments spanning the world’s regions since Spring 2007 have demonstrated that numerous countries welcome the IRENA initiative and would like to be involved in setting up the Agency. At the invitation of the German Federal Government, representatives of 60 countries met in Berlin, Germany, on 10 / 11 April 2008 to attend the Preparatory Conference for the Foundation of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA). At the conference, representatives expressed their overall support for the foundation of IRENA.
On 30 June / 1 July 2008, the German Federal Government hosted two workshops in Berlin, Germany, that addressed IRENA's initial working programme and its statutes & finances.
EUROSOLAR press release.
At the Final Preparatory Conference for IRENA hosted by the Spanish Government on 23 / 24 October 2008, in Madrid, Spain, more than 50 states attended. About 150 representatives from industrialised and developing countries finalised discussions on IRENA's Statutes and thus paved the way for IRENA to be founded in January 2009 in Bonn (Germany).
EUROSOLAR press release.
IRENA was officially established in Bonn on 26 January 2009. 125 delegations attended the Founding Conference of IRENA and a total of 75 states, both developing and industrialised, signed the Agency’s Statute. You’ll find the current list of Signatories here.
The establishment of IRENA is a huge success. Hermann Scheer as President of EUROSOLAR and General Chair of the World Council for Renewable Energy (WCRE) has brought up the idea to found an IRENA already in 2001 and has been speaking in favour of the Agency’s establishment ever since.
Press release and speech Herman Scheer.
IRENA started its work on 27 January 2009, only one day after the Founding Conference. During the first session of the Preparatory Commission, the Agency’s interim body, criteria and procedures for selecting IRENA’s Interim Director-General and its interim headquarters were adopted. All Signatories are invited to submit offers and nominations by 30 April 2009. Egypt will host the next session of the Preparatory Commission which is scheduled for 29 and 30 June 2009. During that session, Signatories will decide on the Interim Director-General and the interim headquarters of IRENA.
Read more about IRENA at www.irena.org.