Africa and Europe solidify partnership to develop renewable energy sources
With the acceptance of a grant for 5 million euros ($6.5 million), Africa has agreed to partner with the European Union (EU) to develop the continent’s numerous renewable energy resources and double the capacity of cross-border electricity interconnections. The partnership is vitally important to the EU as its demand for energy continues to grow. Indeed, a recent study estimates that Europe will need to import fully 65 percent of its energy by 2030, up from a current import rate of 50 percent. The Africa-EU partnership will go a long way towards fulfilling those needs while affording both countries the shared goal of energy security and accessibility.
Key renewable energy sources that will be developed include a minimum of 10,000 megawatts (MW) of hydropower as well as 5,000 MW of wind energy and 500 MW of solar power over the next decade. Geothermal power and biomass outputs will also be increased three-fold. Though Africa’s geothermal power has an estimated energy potential of 9,000 MW, only a small fraction has been tapped.