“We additionally know that shifting to a clear power transition won’t occur in a single day. In some instances the place carbon-neutral choices are unavailable, engagement on pure gasoline initiatives, abated to the fullest diploma potential, could also be obligatory,” he stated.
The US has singled out a extra environment friendly electrical energy provide as one among its high international coverage priorities for Africa. This goes in parallel with the continent navigating a simply and inclusive clear power transition, resulting in financial progress and prosperity; constructing sturdy, sustainable, and clear provide chains for important minerals in help of the clear power transition; and enhancing the monetary and regulatory surroundings within the sector and selling clear and accountable pure useful resource administration.
For that reason, the Obama-administration-era Energy Africa program, administered by USAID, has supported the event of greater than 5,700 megawatts of latest era capability since 2013. In response to USAID knowledge, it’s focusing on including greater than 30,000 megawatts of output by 2030, enough to energy 60 million houses and companies.
Among the many initiatives Fernandez highlighted is the Mega Photo voltaic initiative in Namibia and Botswana, which is able to facilitate the procurement of as many as 5,000 MW of renewable power, in accordance with Fernandez.
Southern Africa’s most in depth photo voltaic power-generation program will energy hundreds of thousands of houses and generate hundreds of jobs whereas stopping an estimated 3.5 million tons of greenhouse gasoline emissions yearly.
Energy Africa has been ramping up exercise. In April, it launched a brand new private and non-private partnership in search of to impress a further 10,000 well being care amenities in sub-Saharan Africa throughout the subsequent decade.
Fernandez additionally highlighted an initiative referred to as Prosper Africa, which was introduced by the Trump administration in search of to attach American and African companies. The US authorities makes use of this initiative to push Africa towards cleaner power.
It has helped facilitate a US$2.1 billion photo voltaic venture in Angola led by US developer Solar Africa, and a US$3.5 billion refinery constructed by a consortium led by Quanten LLC. Fernandez stated that the latter would produce 100,000 barrels of refined gas merchandise a day that conform to the Euro 5 emissions normal.
Fernandez additionally cautioned that authorities initiatives would in all probability be inadequate to deal with Africa’s power wants, and the personal sector must push progress ahead.
‘Race to the highest’
Concerning US international coverage, Fernandez stated the US was not against China investing in Africa so long as the investments had been centred on upholding human rights, democracy, and creating jobs for locals, he advised a press briefing.
“Our coverage is to not ask our companions to decide on between the US and the Individuals’s Republic of China. We’re not doing that.
“We consider that we provide another imaginative and prescient for financial improvement that extra sustainably promotes democratic governance, respect for human rights, and transparency. And we preserve speaking concerning the phrase ‘sustainable,’ that means extra sustainably serving the long-term pursuits of the individuals right here in Africa,” he stated.
Fernandez continued: “I’m right here as a result of African international locations are essential companions in pursuing shared international and regional priorities – from ending the Covid-19 pandemic and constructing again to a extra inclusive international economic system to assembly the local weather problem and constructing resilience. We’re inspired by seeing many African international locations creating alternatives in clear power, advancing democracy, selling respect for human rights, and dealing towards lasting peace and safety,” he stated.
Fernandez emphasised that the US was not “in a race to the underside” to undercut China and different traders by sacrificing requirements in high quality, security, and wages. “Right here in Africa, we suggest to do it by making a race to the highest when it comes to environmental, social, and governance,” he stated.
“What African governments need is for all investments, together with Chinese language investments, to respect native legal guidelines and native pursuits, to observe human rights, together with employee rights, and safety for the surroundings,” he stated.
The US authorities underlined that profitable enterprise relationships want predictable regulatory and authorized environments, whether or not personal or public. “Governments might want to allow investments by means of reforms, and corporations might want to handle and pursue enterprise plans that drive the power transition whereas nonetheless taking over affordable ranges of threat themselves.”