UAE Pledges Billions for Africa’s Green Energy Revolution

by Victor Adetimilehin

Africa is facing a huge gap in renewable energy investment, despite its enormous potential to become a clean energy powerhouse. The continent has received only a fraction of the global funds for green projects, leaving millions of people without access to electricity.

But a new initiative by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) could change that. The UAE, a major oil producer and a leading clean energy investor, has announced $4.5 billion in funding for renewable energy projects across Africa. The UAE-based company Masdar has also partnered with Africa50, a pan-African infrastructure platform, to invest up to $10 billion in clean energy projects targeting 10 gigawatts of capacity by 2030.

The UAE’s announcement came at the recent Africa Climate Summit in Nairobi, where Sultan Al-Jaber, the COP-28 President-Designate and a senior UAE official, said that addressing the finance gap was a top priority for the upcoming global climate conference in Dubai. He also criticized the advanced economies for failing to fulfill their pledge of $100 billion per year in climate finance for the developing world.

The UAE’s initiative has been welcomed by African leaders and experts, who see it as a game-changer for the continent’s climate resilience and green industrialization. Alain Ebobisse, the CEO of Africa50, said that the UAE’s proposal was “real and concrete” and that it would help scale-up private investments and fast-track the delivery of sustainable infrastructure.

Aubrey Hruby, a senior fellow at the Atlantic Council and an advisor on African markets, said that the UAE was stepping into a void left by the West and that it could play an important role as a bridge between developing countries and advanced economies. She said that the UAE was credible in both worlds and that it took climate investment in Africa seriously.

Africa has a tremendous opportunity to leapfrog 20th-century infrastructure and harness its abundant solar and wind resources. According to the International Energy Agency, Africa could increase its renewable energy capacity by eight times by 2030, providing electricity to millions of people and boosting economic growth. The UAE’s initiative could help make this vision a reality.

Source: Mining Weekly

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