Renewable Energy is a chance for Africa


Access to cleaner, more affordable energy for people worldwide is a current priority for the United Nations. But what exactly do African countries need in order to foster renewable energies? This is the focus of a conference arranged by the African Renewable Energy Alliance (AREA) taking place from 29th June to 1st July in the Nigerian capital of Abuja.

Experts in legislation, technology, project development, finance and African leapfrogging will advise at the ‘Power Kick for Africa 2011 – Renewable Energy and Gender’ conference. “We want to identify concrete implementation possibilities for the participants,” says Ansgar Kiene, Director Africa Liaison Office of the World Future Council and conference organizer. Delivery of feasible renewable energy solutions will be highlighted.

The conference will be opened by Elizabeth Thabethe, Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry in South Africa. Two prominent councillors of the World Future Council will take part: Hafsat Abiola-Costello, China-Africa Bridge and ‘Alternative Nobel Prize’ laureate and Dipal C. Barua, Bright Green Energy Foundation, Bangladesh. Experts include Thembani Bukula, Head Electricity Regulation, NERSA, South Africa, Inigo Sabater Eizaguirre, Vestas, Dr. Rose Mwebaza, Regional Expert on Gender and Climate Change Adaptation, UNDP/African Adaptation Programme, Uganda and Prof. Salah Arafa, School of Sciences and Engineering, American University in Cairo, Egypt, among others.

The energy issue is also a women’s issue. Better health, education, quality of life – African women can disproportionately benefit from electrification. Gender as a main determinant of energy resource access, utilisation, opportunities and control will be highlighted at the ‘Solar-Powered Public Viewing’ of the Women’s Football World Cup match between Germany and Nigeria on 30th June, organised by the World Future Council together with Bosch Solar Energy AG and the Heinrich Böll Stiftung Nigeria. The event will feature interviews with Nigerian footballers, exciting football played on the big screen and cool drinks from the solar-powered refrigerator.