How can the G20 transform our economies to maximize efficient, equitable use of resources, while meeting the challenge of ensuring economic stability and growth?

We can start by dispelling the myth that economic growth and low-carbon, environmentally sensitive development are mutually exclusive objectives. A growth model that improves resource efficiency and mitigates climate change also generates a number of reinforcing benefits including accelerated job creation, healthier populations, expanded access to secure energy supplies and sustained global economic growth.

As the President of Mexico, I have strongly endorsed green growth as the model for my country’s long-term development. Mexico is the second emerging economy to host the G20 and, like South Korea in 2010, we recognize that growth cannot come at the expense of the environment or our underlying resources base.  It is for these reasons that the Mexican Chair has made Green Growth a priority theme for this year’s G20 Summit in Los Cabos.

The G20 leaders recognize the central importance of green growth and many countries are demonstrating strong leadership through effective and progressive policies. However, for the transition to green growth to be successful we need  to adopt an inclusive approach. Businesses are a natural partner, since they can provide new technologies, innovative ideas and investment opportunities with regard to profitable green technologies such as energy efficiency, renewable energy, low-carbon transport and sustainable water management. We require leadership from the private sector, as well as the creation of new public private partnerships to foster innovative new models for green growth.

It is in this spirit that I welcome the initiative undertaken by the Business 20 Task Force on Green Growth to launch the Green Growth Action Alliance.  This is a unique public-private partnership among over 40 energy companies, banks and development finance institutions which will work in close collaboration with the G20 and other governments to develop breakthrough financing models for green growth and target public money to leverage larger private sector investments into green infrastructure projects. With a clear timetable and a working plan to guide its efforts, I have great confidence that progress can be made and presented back to subsequent G20 Summits, starting with Russia in 2013.

As we gather for the 2012 G20 Summit, we face significant and systemic global challenges. I am convinced that green growth is a central solution to close the widening gaps between man and nature and between rich and poor. The Green Growth Action Alliance can count with Mexico’s full commitment to become a successful initiative.

Author: Felipe Calderon is the President of Mexico and hosts the 2012 G20 Leaders Summit in Los Cabos on 17-19 June 2012

Image: Mexican President Felipe Calderon talks to the media in Los Cabos June 16, 2012. REUTERS/Mariana Bazo