African Nations Unite for Revolutionary Energy Leap: The BESS Consortium

african-nations-join-bess-consortium Subtitle: Lighting Up Africa: The Power of Collaboration

by Motoni Olodun

In a groundbreaking move, several African nations have expressed their intent to join the Battery Energy Storage Systems (BESS) Consortium. This initiative, launched at COP28, promises to revolutionize Africa’s energy landscape by developing advanced energy storage solutions through collaboration and innovation.

Countries including Burkina Faso, Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Mauritania, Mozambique, Nigeria, and Togo have formally expressed interest in joining the Consortium. As part of the Global Leadership Council, the BESS Consortium commits its members to participate in efforts to reach energy storage commitments of 5 GW through the end of 2024. This is a stepping stone towards the ultimate goal of achieving 400 GW of renewable energy by 2030.

The Consortium’s resource partners, which include the African Development Bank, the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank, the Agence Française de Développement (AFD), Africa50 and Masdar, will provide support to these countries. This support will help prepare projects, improve the regulatory environment, and unlock private and public investment.

Malawi’s President Dr. Lazarus Chakwera expressed his country’s commitment to maintaining a renewable energy generation pathway for a sustainable future. He highlighted the importance of projects like the BESS Consortium in making this low-carbon pathway a reality.

Mauritania’s Minister of Petroleum, Mines and Energy, Nany Ould Chrougha, also expressed satisfaction over his country’s membership in the consortium. He emphasized the need for battery storage for the country, which already records 40% reliance on renewable energy, and is set to become increasingly dependent, particularly, on solar and wind power.

African Development Bank President, Dr Akinwumi Adesina, expressed pride in being at the forefront of this transformative journey. He highlighted the synergies between the BESS consortium and the Bank’s flagship Desert to Power initiative.

Dr Rajiv J. Shah, President of the Rockefeller Foundation and Co-chair of the Global Leadership Council, stressed the importance of sufficient storage capacity for countries to add renewable energy to their grids at the scale needed to reduce emissions and create economic opportunity.

Barbados, Belize, and India have also joined the BESS Consortium. The Prime Minister of Barbados, Mia Mottley, expressed her country’s commitment to playing a leading role in urging concrete deliverables on climate and climate financing.

This initiative is a beacon of hope for a cleaner, greener, and more prosperous Africa. Together, we can light up and power Africa for generations to come.

Source: Ecofin Agency

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