By Victor Uzoho
To achieve net-zero emissions by 2050, Nigeria and other African countries need to invest about $2.8 trillion in clean energy mix.
Also, to meet the global race, African countries need to reduce their yearly carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by 1.62m kilotons.
This was revealed in a recent report by multinational professional services company, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), at the ongoing 26th United Nations (UN) Conference of Parties (COP 26), climate forum in Glasgow, Scotland.
According to the report, investment in low-carbon energy systems in Africa lagged at a global pace.
The ‘PwC Africa Energy Review 2021’, released at the weekend, said with the acceleration of the global net-zero journey, there is an increasing focus on developing countries and their lack of affordability to meet such net-zero targets.
PwC noted that the fiscal constraints being experienced across Africa, create a challenge for the continent to move with pace on its net-zero journey.
According to the review, despite global climate finance commitments from developed economies aimed at $100 billion yearly, the allocation to Africa falls significantly short of what the continent requires to meet global targets.
Proffering solutions, PwC called for private partnerships, public-private partnerships (PPPs), and blended finance with strong public sector governance and innovative financing instruments to overcome these challenges.
The fiscal constraints being experienced across Africa, create a challenge for the continent to move with pace on its net-zero journey.
However, the review noted that the majority of Africa’s 54 countries (35) have made commitments towards net-zero emissions, but at an estimated cost of $2.8 trillion just to transition Africa’s energy base by 2050.
It however stated that the required investment levels are unaffordable to most countries, hence, the increased call for international financial support from developed nations.
The review outlined a double challenge for Africa on energy transition as well as addressing energy poverty, in line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Remarking on the report, the PWC Africa Oil and Gas Industry Leader, Pedro Omontuemhen, said the energy sector in Africa is diverse and characterised by different demands and needs in each country.
He added that although the energy journey for each country may be different, an overall perspective is needed on common issues to reduce deficits on the continent.
According to Omontuemhen, while the importance of global decarbonisation and a sustainable planet is foremost, the journey to achieve net-zero is highlighting the risk of further entrenching economic winners and losers.