Dubai, Dec 2 (IANS): A new partnership between UNOPS and SEforALL will support governments, donors and other stakeholders to accelerate the energy transition in Africa and find a sustainable way to meet its growing energy needs, which is one of the core development challenges for the continent.
The Africa Energy Transition Partnership (AETP), announced on the sidelines of the UN Climate Change Conference (COP28) in Dubai, will deliver joint action and improved coordination, by addressing issues that impede access to renewable energy, energy efficiency, and sustainable infrastructures.
Over 40 per cent of the population in Africa lives without access to electricity, and 70 per cent without access to clean cooking fuels. Africa enjoys immense energy potential, particularly in renewable energy, yet only a fraction of this is currently being used.
Against this context, the partnership represents a unique opportunity to support the region's energy development and climate goals.
Mobilising technical and financial resources in energy projects remains a key challenge. The partnership will bring funders together with African governments, and other stakeholders to develop a shared vision to ensure the right energy mix for the continent.
UNOPS, a UN organisation, will be responsible for managing the funds and providing operational and administrative support, while SEforALL will provide access to finance and technical assistance.
The Africa Energy Transition Partnership will have a pan-continental view, however, as an initial step its first phase will be implemented in Ghana, Nigeria and Kenya until 2028, while other African countries are identified to be incorporated as the programme rolls out.
AETP builds on lessons learned from the ongoing Southeast Asia Energy Transition Partnership, which since 2020 supports Indonesia, Vietnam and the Philippines to accelerate the transition towards a sustainable energy system.
Jorge Moreira da Silva, the UNOPS Executive Director said: "Access to reliable and clean energy is key to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals. Africa’s rapid economic expansion calls for sustainable solutions to meet growing energy needs and this is one of the core development challenges for the continent.
"UNOPS is committed to supporting Africa in its efforts to provide access to energy for all, and to ensure that the clean energy transition delivers for Africa's economic and social development."
Damilola Ogunbiyi, CEO and Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Sustainable Energy for All, remarked: "The energy transition in Africa presents an unparalleled opportunity to address climate change and promote sustainable development.
"It is extremely vital that we think of how people access and consume energy, especially in regions where energy infrastructure does not adequately meet demand. This is why at Sustainable Energy for All we work with African governments to develop whole-of-economy Energy Transition and Investment Plans that help build energy systems to support economic and social development and achieve net-zero emissions."