After a six-year hiatus, former US President Bill Clinton was joined by panelists the Chief Executive and Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Sustainable Energy for All, Damilola Ogunbiyi; CEO of BlackRock, Larry Fink and CEO of Unilever, Alan Jope, to lead talks as Clinton Global Initiative return to New York City.
At the recently concluded conference, the panel discussed investing in sustainable prosperity, connecting the UN, state actors, and the private sector towards accelerating Sustainable Development Goal 7 – affordable and sustainable energy for all.
Advisers to Mr. Clinton said that in the years since, he had longed to restart the event. “He would tell me regularly when we were just talking before a board meeting, ‘I was just out last night and someone was saying when are you going to start CGI again?’” said Robert Harrison, former chief executive of the Clinton Global Initiative, from 2007 to 2016, and a board member of the Clinton Foundation.
“A year ago, 10 months ago, we looked at each other and said, ‘Let’s try,’” Mr. Harrison recalled.
The Clintons’ return to the world stage was heralded in March with a letter from Mr. Clinton that doubled as a call to arms. With the pandemic, the war in Ukraine and the challenges to democracy at home and abroad, the world needed CGI back, according to Mr. Clinton.
The conference as designed tasks participants to make commitments, sometimes in dollars, other times in targets — such as for creating jobs or delivering clean water.
Up to the hiatus in 2016, attendees announced more than 3,700 commitments, which by the organization’s own tally had helped more than 435 million people in over 180 countries.