IRENA and AfDB supporting Africa’s energy transition


The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) and the African Development Bank (AfDB) have agreed to work closely together to advance the continent’s energy transition through joint efforts to encourage investment in low-carbon energy projects.

Under the Declaration of Intent, the two organisations confirmed their wish to work together to support the continent’s energy transition within the context of core activities. These include co-hosting green energy investment forums as part of IRENA’s contribution to the Climate Investment Platform and cooperation on the Bank’s annual Africa Investment Forum.

In addition, a strong focus will be put on concrete support to strengthen the role of renewable energy in nationally defined contributions and sustainable development objectives.

The joint declaration was signed by Francesco La Camera, director-general of IRENA, and Kevin Kanina Kariuki, vice-president, power, energy, climate and green growth at the African Development Bank.

“Driven by the aspiration to harness Africa’s huge renewable energy potential, the African Development Bank is today at the forefront of investing in renewable energy in Africa. The Bank’s partnership with IRENA will advance this aspiration and support Africa’s energy transition and our goal to achieve universal access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy in Africa by 2030.”

Kevin Kanina Kariuki, vice-president, power, energy, climate and green growth at the African Development Bank.

IRENA’s Global Renewables Outlook report published earlier this year revealed that sub-Saharan Africa will produce 67 percent of its electricity from indigenous and clean renewable energy sources by 2030. Further research shows that the energy transition will raise GDP, increase healthcare and boost up to 2 million additional green jobs in sub-Saharan Africa by 2050.

“The African continent has some of the most abundant renewable energy resources in the world and the potential to transform outcomes for millions of people through the accelerated deployment of a renewables-based energy system. Renewables will increase energy security, create green jobs, advance energy access, including clean cooking, and help build resilient African economies.

“This agreement represents the type of coordinated international cooperation that is the cornerstone of the realisation of sustainable development in Africa and the achievement of Paris Agreement goals. We will pursue an action-oriented agenda that puts African countries on a path to realising their full renewable energy potential.”

Francesco La Camera, director-general of IRENA.

The declaration also provides for cooperation on the Desert to Power initiative of the African Development Bank, which aims to mobilize public and private financing to build 10 GW of solar power by 2025 in 11 countries in the Sahel region of the African continent.

The two institutions will also participate in capacity building and information sharing activities to enhance collaborative efforts and collaborate on the development of case studies on regional and national renewable energy.

Arnes Biogradlija

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