Countries like Ghana, Kenya and the Congo have been making drastic improvements with regards to health, business and reducing overall poverty.
However, there is still a long way to go to completely eradicate poverty issues. Several countries and organizations have banded together in order to continue making progress in these areas.
One such project that is underway is the United Kingdom’s Energy Africa campaign. The goal of this campaign, as stated by the UK’s government site, is to “help Africa to achieve universal energy access by 2030. A reliable electricity supply is one of the most powerful tools for lifting people out of poverty and ending dependency on aid.”
Despite drastic improvements that have been made in Africa, USAID still reports, “Two out of three people in Sub-Saharan Africa lack access to electricity.”
Addressing this issue, the UK’s Energy Africa campaign states that “together with African governments, investors, businesses, NGOs, think tanks and other donors, DFID will work to increase investment in off-grid energy firms, overcome regulatory barriers, foster innovation, and accelerate delivery of solar energy systems to households across Africa.”
The UK alone is not the only group interested in renewable energy in Africa, though. The IRENA, International Renewable Energy Agency, has shown high hopes for an improved Africa through energy changes.
The IRENA recently came out with a report, Africa 2030, that outlines these hopes. In the report it is stated that “modern renewable energy will provide a prominent alternative to support the African population, which is striving for better living standards, more comfort, and fewer health hazards and avoiding extreme inconveniences.”
The main focus is to switch Africa to four key energy sources: biomass, hydropower, wind and solar power. While this large switch sounds expensive, professionals have shown it as a necessary investment.
The IRENA report has shown that “the abundance and high quality of renewable-energy resources render renewables economically competitive, in particular as the costs of renewable technologies are rapidly decreasing. Recent renewable-energy project deals concluded in Africa will deliver power at some of the lowest costs worldwide.”
The Energy Africa campaign was launched on Oct. 22. The promise of success in renewable energy campaigns is there. The hope to bring reliable and sustainable energy to everyone brings the promise of really “lifting people out of poverty and ending dependency on aid.”
— Katherine Martin