Preserving the environment is key to energy production, says Itaipu’s general director at COP 28

  • Energy

  • ESG

In a panel at the Climate Conference, Enio Verri spoke about environmental recovery actions and integration with the UN SDGs. “Itaipu is the most sustainable hydroelectric plant in the world”

In a panel at the United Nations Conference on Climate Change, in Dubai this Saturday afternoon (2), the Brazilian director general of Itaipu, Enio Verri, presented data and stated that the binational hydroelectric plant is the most sustainable in the world. The speech referred to the company’s forest recovery and environmental care actions for decades, which will now be expanded within the Itaipu Mais que Energia program.

Verri reinforced the company’s commitment to complying with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), proposed by the UN, as a way of taking care of its energy production input: water. And he highlighted that Itaipu depends on preserving the environment to continue producing electricity.

Because of this relationship, according to him, social and environmental responsibility is part of the company’s mission. “In our case, without water, there is no energy. Therefore, taking care of water means investing in energy. Itaipu has assumed social and environmental responsibilities in its strategic planning and, for more than 15 years, it has been promoting substantial changes in the territories in which it operates,” he said.

Photos: Cláudio Kbene.

The director emphasized that to preserve the environment it is essential to take care of people. For him, tackling climate change involves fighting poverty and hunger, something that must be considered in different activities. “The 17 SDGs of the 2030 Agenda are interconnected and transversal, which allow evaluating the sustainability of a project from economic, social and environmental points of view.”

An opinion shared by Itaipu’s former employee, sociologist, and wife of President Lula, Janja Lula da Silva, who was also part of the event. She, who followed the implementation of many of the company’s social policies, reinforced the integration of the SDGs. “All objectives, to a greater or lesser extent, are connected. Talking about energy access is talking about fighting hunger.” Janja highlighted that to achieve its objectives, the government needs help from the whole of society, remembering the work that Itaipu has already done through partnerships with municipalities and entities.

Binacional was also cited as an example by the head of the General Secretariat of the Presidency of the Republic, Márcio Macêdo. According to him, the company has a consolidated policy on SDG action. “We have a lot to learn from Itaipu, especially about this dialogue.”.

The Minister of Mines and Energy, Alexandre Silveira, and Ambassador André Corrêa do Lago also participated in the panel. The debate was mediated by the co-founder and president of the Igarapé Institute, Ilona Szabó de Carvalho.