Friday, 18 February

Dear <<First Name>>

Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi said this week that helping African nations during the clean energy transition should be a priority of COP27, which Egypt will be hosting in November. 

He is, of course, entirely correct. 

But El-Sisi also stressed how the continent needed to “exploit” the financial benefits of its oil and gas reserves, which many will see as a far more contentious claim as the world desperately clings on to its hopes of a 1.5C future. Making the point that many developed nations had got rich on oil and gas, the president said that if those same nations wanted African countries to keep reserves in the ground then it was up to the “rich to give to the poor”. 

Oil and gas are yesterday’s technologies of course, and wanting to use them for development now is not only an expensive option, it’s also a bit like going to the shop and asking for an old Nokia even though you could have a nice shiny iPhone.   

But the equity point is well made. Do we face the prospect of an old-world fossil-fuel industrialisation of Africa that will almost certainly keep the world on course to climate catastrophe, or will developed countries fund the implementation of newer, better technologies and thereby help to overcome a problem that was caused by them anyway? To my mind, this should be a rhetorical question. With adequate international finance, Africa can exploit its abundance of renewable energy resources to ensure its energy transition is clean, fair and – ultimately - to the benefit of us all. 

Meanwhile, Pacific island nations met this week to analyse COP26 outcomes and what they mean for the 1.5C future upon which these nations all depend. Given that a meagre 146 delegates out of 40,000 registered participants in Glasgow were from Pacific islands, El-Sisi’s focus on support for developing nations will no doubt have been very keenly welcomed. 


Geoff Sinclair

Managing Director, Camco Clean Energy

Story of the week
European Union agrees to mobilise EUR1.6 billion to finance the energy transition in Morocco. The nation aims to increase its share of renewables by 52% by 2025.

West Africa

Ghana: Solar training centre inaugurated in Takoradi (ConstructionReviewOnline)
- The permanent Takoradi Technical University facility is dedicated to solar PV training to improve the employment prospects of its graduates.

Ivory Coast: CI-Energies launches a call for tenders for floating solar plant (Afrik21)
- The call is for expressions of interest to execute the engineering, procurement and construction contract for the floating 20MWp facility. 

Nigeria: World Bank and IFC work to develop domestic market for carbon capture (AllAfrica)
- The process will involve selecting the most promising companies for carbon capture, utilisation and storage.

Nigeria: Government signs deal with eight mini-grid developers (ThisDayLive)
- The EUR9.3 million project, coordinated by the Rural Electrification Agency, will see 23 mini-grids developed nationwide.

East Africa

East Africa: Banks under pressure from financial regulators to focus on ESG issues (TheCitizen)
- A virtual seminar held by KPMG highlighted that ESG is quickly becoming a mandatory legal requirement, as opposed to a moral responsibility.

Rwanda: Finergreen and Hydroneo team up for renewables investments (NewTimes)
- Having already invested millions of euros in three hydropower projects, the pair plan to partner for a number of long-term projects in the country. 

Southern Africa

South Africa: Manstashe claims renewables can boost the economy (EngineeringNews)
- At the recent Solar Power Africa Conference, the Mineral Resources and Energy Minister departed from his usual defence of fossil fuels to highlight the country’s solar potential.

South Africa: Cape Town prepares tender process for IPPs (IOL)
- The tenders aim to procure 300MW of renewable energy from IPPs, as part of efforts to cut load shedding.

South Africa: Government considers covering Eskom’s USD25.8 billion debt (BusinessTech)
- Eskom’s concerning financial position is considered unsustainable and government intervention may be required to make the utility financially viable. 

South Africa: Irish energy company signs 10-year PPA (Afrik21)
- Kibo Energy has struck a deal to develop a 2.7MW plastic syngas power plant in Gauteng to produce baseload electricity.

Africa - other

Africa: UN pledges USD54.5 million to help developing nations reach SDGs (EDIE)
- The funding, in the form of impact bonds, will be allocated to projects across Kenya, Madagascar, Zimbabwe, Suriname and North Macedonia.

Africa: Team Europe One Stop Shop for Green Energy Investments launches (GET.invest)
- The pilot phase of the programme will involve launching the new online platform to provide access to European support and financing instruments for clean energy solutions in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Morocco: MoU signed with Finland to strengthen cooperation in energy sector (EINNews)
- The agreement aims to establish a legal framework for exchange of experiences in the field of energy and the development of projects of common interest.

Morocco: EU to invest EUR1.6 billion in energy transition by 2027 (Afrik21)
- This agreement will help achieve Morocco’s goal of increasing the share of renewable energy in its electricity mix by 52% by 2025.

Rest of the world

Canada/USA: Tariffs imposed on Canadian solar products by US ruled unjust (PV-Tech)
- A panel has settled the USMCA trade dispute in favor of Canada, meaning the country should now be able to reap the full benefits of its solar industry.

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