WEEA: World Energy Efficiency Association
Founded in June 1993, the World Energy Efficiency Association (WEEA) was a non-profit organisation made up of developed and developing country institutions and individuals with the target of increasing energy efficiency.
The roots of WEEA lie in a 1992 Atlantic Council of the United States initiative, which sought to study how to improve international energy technology cooperation, programs and transfer efforts. This diverse group was made up of over ninety world energy experts from public and private institutions in the developing world, Eastern and Central Europe and the former Soviet Union.
The council’s final report included recommendations for the establishment of an international mechanism to assist developing countries in accessing information on energy efficiency and renewable energy.
Over sixty founding members attended the first WEEA organisational conference, held in Washington, D.C. in June 1993 and made possible with significant financial support from the US Agency for International Development, the European Union and the Japanese Comittee for Energy Policy Promotion.
At that first meeting, WEEA drew up its mission statement, agreeing that the organisation would:
- Serve as a clearinghouse for information on energy efficiency technologies and measures
- Disseminate this information worldwide
- Publicise international cooperation efforts in energy efficiency.
Among the founding members in attendance, four were international organisations, while thirty-five were nation-state representatives, including over twenty from developing and reindustrialising countries.
Members are drawn from both the private and public sectors - intergovernmental organisations, non-governmental organisations, commercial organisations and non-profit corporations are all represented. Individuals and representatives of membership organisations and governments are also eligible to join WEEA.
In order to maintain a strong voice within the association from developing and industrialising states, WEEA regulations state that at least 50% of board members should come from non-OECD nations.
Following the success of its first conference, the first general assembly of the WEEA was held in Tunis, Tunisia in January 1994 to elect officers and representatives, draw up initiative targets and approve a budget for future activities. Presentations were also made by guest speakers and leading experts on regional energy efficiency projects.
During its years of operation, WEEA was involved in a number of efforts to promote and increase international cooperation in energy efficiency.
- At its first organisational conference, WEEA founding members proposed the development of a comprehensive directory of government agencies, intergovernmental bodies, non-governmental organisations, international financial institutions and private firms with an interest in energy efficiency. This became the International Directory of Energy Efficiency Institutions, which is now on its third edition.
- Published in-depth profiles of energy efficiency centres online, focusing on its own member institutions.
- Participated in conferences on energy efficiency initiatives.
- Provided feedback and input on member programs, assisting members in contacting knowledgeable institutions.
- Supported members by providing up-to-date information on policies and programs which increase energy efficiency, while helping coordinate voluntary support for members.
- Created guides to energy-efficient technologies and materials to promote energy efficiency and conservation.