Kenya’s recently elected President William Ruto said on Tuesday that while Africa is more vulnerable than other regions to the fossil fuel-related climate crisis and has done the least to cause it, “the continent has an opportunity to lead and show the world the climate to thrive.” no need to break.”
“The global transition to clean energy is now more urgent than ever.”
“We have huge potential for renewable energy and this abundant wind and solar energy can power Africa’s development,” Ruto wrote in a Guardian opinion piece. “Instead of following in the fossil fuel footsteps of those who have gone before, we can leapfrog this dirty energy and embrace the benefits of clean energy.”
“Kenya is home to the world’s largest wind farm and our electricity is now 92% renewable, with 74% of our total energy use coming from clean energy,” Ruto wrote. clean energy by 2030″ and called on “all African nations to join us on this journey”.
The sharp drop in costs makes clean energy the most cost-effective option. International Energy Agency report [IEA] A study published last month found that globally there are already more jobs in clean energy than in fossil fuels, and it predicts that the gap will widen as more countries decarbonize. The transition to clean energy is a no-brainer. This will create jobs, protect local economies and accelerate the sustainable industrialization of Africa.
As Africans, we will call for a swift and just transition, fulfilling the commitment of the Heads of State to double Africa’s installed energy capacity through renewable energy sources by 2030. yesterday’s dirty energy systems, rapidly transitioning to the clean energy systems of the future.
The Kenyan president’s essay focused on arguments long made by climate justice advocates in Africa and beyond.
In June, for example, African activists urged officials to reject the IEA’s call for nations across the continent to rapidly extract and export fossil gas reserves before accelerating the world’s transition to clean energy sources.
Instead of heeding the IEA’s recommendation, which comes a year after the Paris-based agency said global expansion of coal, gas and oil production is incompatible with reducing greenhouse gas pollution at the pace needed to maintain a livable climate, African policymakers should focus. They said to “implement sustainable renewable energy solutions” as soon as possible.
Looking ahead to the United Nations COP27 climate conference starting next month in Egypt, Ruto noted that delegates from the continent will demand that rich nations “provide the finance and technology that Africa needs to adapt to climate impacts, support those in need and manage. energy transition.”
“Among the outcomes of this global gathering should be a financial framework that ensures Africa’s planned and orderly transition from fossil fuels, supports our workers, communities and national economies and ensures our growth,” Ruto wrote. “Finance and technology must be provided to our developing countries, while enabling all African countries to accelerate our transition to clean energy.”
“The transition to clean energy is a no-brainer. It will create jobs, protect local economies and accelerate Africa’s sustainable industrialization.”
“The global transition to clean energy,” he added, “is more urgent now than ever.”
Ruto’s argument came a day after UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned, as he has repeatedly done before, that the world is in a “life-and-death struggle for our security today and our survival tomorrow.”
“Climate action has stalled while climate chaos continues,” the UN chief said at a pre-COP meeting in Kinshasa, Congo. “Actions by the wealthiest developed and developing economies are simply out of sync. Taken together, current pledges and policies close the door on our chances of limiting global temperature increases to 2°C. [Paris agreement’s] Target 1.5°C”.
The fossil fuel industry’s plans to spend more than a trillion dollars on fossil fuel extraction in Africa over the next three decades will further fuel the planet’s warming emissions and lead to deadly extreme weather events worldwide, a recent report by a number of environmental groups makes clear. Create “unfunded cleanup, government revenue shortfalls and stranded assets leaving behind overnight job losses.”
On Monday, Guterres called for “meaningful progress” on two key issues at COP27. First, rich nations must step up to help low-income nations suffering loss and damage beyond their ability to adapt, he said, calling it a “moral imperative that cannot be overlooked” because “failure to act… causes more loss of trust and more climate damage.” “
Second, “the world needs clarity on where they are this year to meet their $100 billion annual pledge to support climate action in developing countries,” Guterres said. “We need to see evidence that they will double adaptation funding to at least $40 billion by 2025, as agreed in Glasgow.”
“On every climate front,” the UN chief added, “the only solution is decisive action in solidarity.”
As Ruto reminded readers: “The climate emergency is here and now. Today, communities in Kenya are suffering the consequences. Millions of Kenyans and millions more across the Horn of Africa are on the brink of starvation due to devastating drought.”
“It is not too late to respond,” the Kenyan president emphasized, “but to combat this threat, we must act urgently to keep global warming below 1.5°C, help those most in need, and end our addiction to fossil fuels. “.
“Wind turbines and solar panels are quick to install and can produce and deliver energy more quickly and easily than a new oil rig, and do less damage to our fragile climate,” he said. “There is a better way to power the world economy. It’s fairer, cheaper and less destructive to ourselves and our communities, the future of our families and the natural environment we all depend on.”