When UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres launched the International Solar Alliance last October, he applauded the goal of mobilizing about $1 trillion dollars towards the deployment of some 1,000 gigawatts of solar energy by 2030. “It is clear,” he said, “that we are witnessing a global renewable energy revolution.” That revolution is also taking place under the leadership of the African Development Bank (AfDB) which has embarked on a highly ambitious solar project to make Africa a renewable power-house, titled “Desert to Power (DtP) Initiative”.
This project is expected to stretch across the Sahel region by tapping into the region’s abundant solar resource. The Initiative aims to develop and provide 10 GW of solar energy by 2025 and supply 250 million people with green electricity including in some of the world’s poorest countries. At least 90 million people will be connected to electricity for the first time, lifting them out of energy poverty. Currently, 64% of the Sahel’s population – covering Senegal, Nigeria, Mauritania, Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger, Chad, Sudan, Ethiopia, Djibouti and Eritrea – lives without electricity, a major barrier to development, with consequences for education, health and business. The AfDB has rightly pointed out that lack of energy remains a significant impediment to Africa’s economic and social development.
The Rockefeller Foundation announced the launch of the Global Commission to End Energy Poverty (GCEEP) to address one of the greatest challenges of the 21st century: the lack of access to electricity for almost a billion people across the world, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa. The GCEEP is an acceleration of The Rockefeller Foundation’s work on energy poverty and will fast-track sustainable power solutions, investments, and partnerships that will deploy globally over the next decade.
The launch announcement follows the first full convening of Commissioners at The Rockefeller Foundation’s Bellagio Center in Bellagio, Italy, on September 10. The Commission will operate under the joint chairmanship of The Rockefeller Foundation President Dr. Rajiv J. Shah, former U.S. Secretary of Energy Ernest J. Moniz, and the Africa Development Bank President Akinwumi Adesina.
Every country aspires to provide reliable, affordable, and sustainable electricity to its citizens. Yet during the past 25 years, some countries made huge strides, while others saw little progress. What accounts for this difference?
A Saudi Arabian energy company , ACWA Power is ahead of the competition in a bid to win a deal with the Ethiopian government to build an industrial scale solar park, which will be the first of its kind for the country. If awarded, the company will bring in its own financing to build solar power plant in two locations, each generating 125MW of power that will be sold to Ethiopian electric power, EEP.
ACWA Power placed its financial offer of 0.025 dolars a kilowatt-hour on Friday, September 5, 2019, through the independent power purchase agreement framework. Four other international power companies bidding against ACWA Power were excluded due to non-compliance with the requirement. On Tuesday, they were issued letters of notice by the public private partnership directorate, under the ministry of finance.