- Antonio Guterres declares that for Africa to achieve its potential, it requires confronting some deeply rooted challenges and injustices
- The UN boss revived his call for the world to step up climate action to avoid the worst effects of climate change
- Guterres: global institutions need to guarantee African representation, and respond to African needs
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South Africa – United Nations secretary-general Antonio Guterres says the green future of Africa relies on confronting and addressing deeply rooted challenges and injustices posed on Africa.
UN Boss declares readiness for renewable energy
Speaking on the sidelines during the inaugural Africa Climate Summit (ACS) on Tuesday, September 5, the UN boss renewed his call for global promises to provide essential support and help Africa make a just and equitable transition to renewable energy.
“As I detailed in my remarks, Africa can be a renewable energy superpower. Now is the time to bring together African countries with developed countries, financial institutions, and technology companies to create a true African Renewable Energy Alliance,” he said.
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Injustices posed on African countries
He said that this requires addressing another injustice: an outdated, unfair, and dysfunctional global financial system.
“On average, African countries pay four times more for borrowing than the United States — and eight times more than the wealthiest European countries. Turbocharging a just and equitable green transition — while supporting the development of more broadly across Africa — requires a dramatic course correction,” he added.
According to Guterres, global institutions must step up, guarantee African representation, and respond to African needs and potential.
Guterres further said that the time had come for the world to end the injustices that are holding Africa back.
“I will work closely with African leaders and organisations like the African Union to make progress towards the peaceful, prosperous, and sustainable future that Africans need and deserve,” he added.
What the Summit means for Africa
President William Ruto said the many initiatives showcased at the Summit testify to the courage of African entrepreneurs and innovators to pursue breakthroughs, exploit opportunities, develop models, and take risks to make our tomorrow better than our today.
“We have therefore committed to concluding this Summit with a Declaration which firmly encourages everyone to keep their promises,” said Ruto.
The event also saw the launch of the green hydrogen strategy and roadmap for Africa.
“Green Hydrogen presents us with the opportunity to reduce transport costs and produce steel for construction and infrastructure projects in Africa. It will create over 24,000 direct jobs and 15,000 indirect jobs,” said Richard Kiplagat, Chairman, Africa Hydrogen Task Force.
Africa Development Bank (ADB) President Akinwumi Adesina said there is a need for Africa to develop with what it has and not what it doesn’t have.
Africa’s renewable energy investment remains low
Investment in renewable energy in Africa fell to its lowest level in more than a decade last year despite the continent’s huge potential, experts said Wednesday at the COP27 climate conference.
Only R 2.6 billion of capital was rolled out for new wind, solar, geothermal and other renewable power-generating projects in 2021, the lowest level of funding in 11 years, research group BloombergNEF (BNEF) said.
This amounted to 0.6 percent of the $434 billion invested in renewables across the world, said the report, released at the United Nations meeting in the Egyptian seaside resort of Sharm el-Sheikh.