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Transition through Polycrisis

Several overlapping crises, termed “polycrisis,” have exposed weaknesses in the interconnected energy, food, and finance systems, placing Asia and the Pacific at a crossroads and possibly threatening longer-term sustainable development. Nonetheless, there is a chance for reform and opportunity within polycrisis—the current generalized economic and social catastrophe affecting the world, consisting of numerous concurrent crises. This might be viewed as a crucial turning point toward a safer and more secure future, reviving momentum for changing the food, energy, and financial systems.


The area's energy, food, and financial systems have been severely disrupted by the polycrisis. Millions more people are falling into poverty due to the multiple crises, hindering efforts to advance the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The transition to a greener, more inclusive economy and society is at risk of being slowed down by this circumstance. This is an urgent need for new energy and food production models that sustainably and affordably meet the region's energy and food requirements.


Innovation, including new technologies, business models, and policy frameworks, are food and energy's primary keys. The Asia-Pacific region is in the need to adopt sustainable farming methods and move away from extensive use of energy, chemical fertilizers, and pesticides that harm the environment and contribute to climate change. In India, solar-powered multi-purpose farming trucks and solar-assisted irrigation are used in off-grid rural communities, which have been contributing to a positive environmental impact. . Strengthening connections between the energy, food, and financial systems is also crucial. Agricultural and industrial waste can also be turned into energy. One interesting example of this is Shikaoi Hydrogen Farm in Hokkaido, Japan. The farm produces carbon-neutral, renewable biogas from agricultural waste and manure from surrounding livestock farms. This purified biomethane is then improved and utilized to create green hydrogen and will be sent to nearby facilities and local animal producers for usage, among other things, in fuel cell vehicles, forklift trucks, and fish breeding facilities.


Accelerating existing efforts to implement solutions will require support from innovative financing sources and models. Therefore, one of the main drivers is recalibrating public financial management from the budgeting process and boosting public investment toward the SDGs. Moreover, scaling up private sector investment would accelerate the transition to sustainable energy and food systems. Currently, Private Financing Models and Sustainability-linked bonds have been introduced. These are bonds public or private entities issued to raise capital for projects contributing to sustainability objectives. Another initiative is blended finance, or employing funds from public and philanthropic investors to spur private sector investment in sustainable development. . Countries must address these concerns while focusing on long-term sustainable development goals to recover from the polycrisis. The transformation of the energy, food, and financial systems at the local, national, subregion, and regional levels must be coordinated and inclusive in order to prepare the Asia-Pacific region to deal with upcoming challenges and meet the sustainability goals.


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