Energy needed for all, says NEPAD
DEVELOPMENT| Sept. 21, 2012, 11:18 a.m.
A leading energy expert has urged the need to maximise on clean and sustainable energy resources in sufficient quantity to accelerate economic growth and improve the living conditions for Africa’s peoples.
Professor Mosad Elmissiry, head of the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD)’s Energy Programme, speaking at a joint United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and NEPAD forum in Nairobi this week, said this acceleration could be achieved through the effective implementation of his Agency’s Programme for Infrastructure Development in Africa (PIDA).”
The workshop brought together leading experts in energy, African Union officials, governments, the private sector, development partners and Regional Economic Communities (RECs) to explore how Africa can harness more of its own national resources to deliver sustainable energy for all Africans.
Key on the agenda of the three-day meeting was how best to make the PIDA mandate more effective and efficient, so as to support industrial growth in Africa. One of PIDA’s objectives is to ensure universal access to sustainable energy on the Continent by 2040. This objective ties in closely with the UN Secretary General’s Energy for All by 2030 initiative under which the NEPAD Agency and UNDP are collaborating.
PIDA provides a common framework for African stakeholders to build the infrastructure necessary for more integrated transport, energy, ICT and trans-boundary water networks to boost trade, spark growth and create jobs. Implementing it will help to deliver a well-connected Africa, facilitate energy flows between African countries and realise the building of an African Economic Community, outlined in the 1991 Abuja Treaty.
“In the energy sector, for instance, more than 20 countries have national power systems below the minimum efficient scale of a single plant. The creation of power pools recognises that regional cooperation, by sharing large-scale, cost-effective energy resources across countries, will reduce the cost of electricity,”Prof Elmissiry said.
PIDA will therefore develop efficient, reliable, cost-effective and environmentally friendly infrastructure for the physical integration of the continent and enhance access to modern energy services for the majority of the African population. PIDA will achieve this through the development of hydro power energy resources, the implementation of high-capacity oil refineries and oil and gas pipeline projects. Most of the power utilities will be inter-connected through transmission corridors, which will cut across Africa from North to South and from East to West.
According to the UNDP more than a billion people will benefit from these commitments. “Achieving universal access to modern energy by 2030 is possible and can lift more than a billion people out of extreme energy poverty. This will require massive investment until 2030. “Developing countries in particular will gain improved access to electricity, mechanical power, and clean cooking solutions through scaled-up renewable energy sources, increased investment, and improved energy policies, said Aboubacar Oualy, Regional Coordinator of the UNDP Regional Energy Project.
In Kenya, for instance, plans are advanced to develop a 8,000km North-South power transmission Corridor from Egypt through Sudan, South Sudan, Ethiopia via Kenya to Malawi, Mozambique, Zimbabwe and South Africa. PIDA will also build a 300 km Petroleum Pipeline running through Kenya and Uganda to lower the transport costs of petroleum between the two countries as part of 15 high priority energy projects to be implemented by 2020 across the Continent, Prof Elmissiry said.
“Close attention will need to be paid to the development of human, institutional and policy capacities if sustainable energy is to be achieved for ALL in African countries. Such an effort requires both technical and soft skills in order to build the infrastructure necessary for improved energy flows to drive productive economies for inclusive growth,” said Florence Nazare, Head of NEPAD Capacity Development Programme.
Nazare highlighted that the Africa Platform for Development Effectiveness (APDev), through which this meeting was facilitated, is a critical mechanism for bringing together key players in the energy sector in harnessing capacities for mutual learning and knowledge sharing towards effective energy results. The APDev will also help provide a platform for advancing stakeholder mobilisation, efforts and capacity development requirements geared at realising the effective implementation of this timely continent-wide initiative.
MORE DEVELOPMENT NEWS
Mainstream Renewable Power to build and operate Ghana’s first utility-scale wind farmGlobal wind and solar company Mainstream Renewable Power today announced the signing of an agreement with Swiss wind farm developer NEK Umwelttechnik to purchase the 225 megawatt (MW) Ayitepa Wind Farm, located 40 kilometres from Accra on the east coast of Ghana. Read More
Tigo supports MUSIGA Grand BallTigo Ghana came out in support of efforts to raise funds for the Ageing Musicians Welfare Fund (AMWEF) of MUSIGA, at a ball in Accra. Read More
Heirs Holdings to ramp up power productionWell-known global business leader and chairman of Heirs Holdings Tony Elumelu says his group “has the ambition to generate at least a quarter of Nigeria’s power consumption needs in the next five years.” Read More
M-KOPA Solar, Safaricom Launch M-KOPA IIIM-KOPA Solar has introduced a Safaricom-branded solar lighting system, as it steps up its campaign to provide clean lighting solutions to millions of homes that are not on the electricity grid. Read More
Orphaned schoolchildren benefit from e-learningSkyVision Global Networks has announced the recent donation of its satellite connectivity solutions to further support students at Ghana’s Crossover International Academy. Read More
Airtel DRC launches ‘Back to School’ promotionMobile operator Airtel has this week launched a humanitarian programme to support its cash-strapped subscribers in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to ease their worries, as the 2014-2015 school year draws near. Read More
TNM donates K1 million to Special OlympicsMobile network service provider TNM has donated K1 million towards the organisation of Special Olympics Malawi (SOM) games taking place in Lilongwe from today. Read More
Mini Grids Summit to be staged in NairobiMajor players in the power industry will convene in Nairobi this November to synergise the commercial potential of Mini Grids in Africa. Read More
Alex families receive Schneider Electric solar lampsSchneider Electric, a specialist in energy management, has partnered with Rays of Hope, a non-profit organisation, providing 28 schoolchildren and their families in the northern Johannesburg township of Alexandra with an alternative to using candles and paraffin as a source of light. Read More
FSDEA announces ‘Future Leaders of Angola’ scholarshipFundo Soberano de Angola (FSDEA) has announced the launch of its Scholarship Program, called ‘Future Leaders of Angola’, aimed at building up the economic empowerment and capacity of a new workforce in the country. Read More
FEATURED STORYMFarmer SMS redefines market access for Ugandan farmers
Ugandan smallholder farmers are benefitting from an ambitious innovative ICT mobile phone initiative that offers weather reports and up-to-date market information about changes in prices for agricultural commodities, thus granting them lucrative returns from their farming ventures.
BEST READ NEWS
IN DEPTHNIG President speaks his mind
Bayo Banjo, CEO, Disc Communications and President, Nigeria Internet Group (NIG) says the proposed licensing of infrastructure companies by the Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC) will breed corruption and entrench monopolistic practices. Kokumo Goodie reports.
COMPANY NEWSVMware announces general availability of new solutions for building, managing and protecting softwar
VMware has announced the general availability of VMware NSX 6.1, VMware vCenter Site Recovery Manager 5.8, VMware vCloud Suite 5.8, VMware vRealize Operations Insight, VMware vRealize Suite ...