The U.N. Industrial Development Organization kicked off its 14th general conference Monday in Vienna. The organization said this year's theme was the sustainability of what it described as a green industrial revolution.
"One thing is clear: green industry is real," UNIDO Director General Kandeh Yumkella said in a statement. "It is already here."
Representatives from all 174 UNIDO member states are taking part in the general conference. It coincides with major climate talks Durban, South Africa.
Yumkella added that, apart from environmental stewardship, access to a green economy "matters for poverty reduction and wealth creation."
Achim Steiner, executive director at the U.N. Environment Program, added that governments need to look beyond clean energy to improvements such as upgrading wastewater treatment facilities and replacing inefficient cook stoves and brick ovens.
Yumkella added that UNIDO was working to advance green technology and industrial practices in the developing world.