Press release. Information from DESERTEC Foundation.
Munich – Prof. Klaus Töpfer will advise the Desertec Industrial Initiative (Dii) on strategic issues. His activities will focus on political and social questions, with a view to realising the Desertec vision to the benefit of all participants in Europe, the Middle East and North Africa.
In Prof. Töpfer, the Dii has gained the support of a top-level, internationally renowned figure and recognised expert in his field. From 1998 to 2006, Klaus Töpfer was Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in Nairobi. Prior to that, he was a member of the German federal government for more than ten years, seven of these as Federal Minister for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety. Furthermore, Prof. Töpfer was appointed the founding director of the Institute for Advanced Climate, Earth System and Sustainability Sciences (IASS) in Potsdam, which was set up in 2009.
Prof. Töpfer: ”Time is fast running out in the battle against global poverty based on a climate-friendly power supply. Up to now, it has taken far too long to transform scientific knowledge into social and political action. The Desertec Industrial Initiative is a prime example of sustainable and entrepreneurial action. Desertec can make a major contribution not only to generating sustainable energy but also to combating climate change. But it is vital to guarantee that the countries in which electricity is produced from renewable energies also benefit in no small measure. This will be my role.”
Paul van Son, CEO of Dii GmbH: ”We are delighted that Prof. Töpfer has agreed to support our initiative. Key to the success of the project is the creation of a regulatory framework for Europe, the Middle East and North Africa that will facilitate investments in solar and wind energy and intercontinental power grid networks. Who better to address related issues at the political level than such a widely experienced and prominent personality as Klaus Töpfer?”
The Desertec Industrial Initiative (Dii) aims to create the framework for generating sustainable and climate-friendly power in the deserts of the Middle East and North Africa. For this purpose, the joint venture Dii GmbH (limited liability company) was founded in October 2009. The founding members of Dii GmbH are ABB, Abengoa Solar, Cevital, the DESERTEC Foundation, Deutsche Bank, E.ON, HSH Nordbank, MAN Solar Millennium, Munich Re, M+W Group, RWE, SCHOTT Solar and Siemens. The number of shareholders will increase in the near future to include further companies from the MENA region and Europe.