Africa’s projected urbanisation rate in the next 40 years is higher than in any other continent with a population of 1.26 billion in 2050 compared to 400 million in 2010. The phenomenal and rapid urban population growth, already occurring in the continent, collides with weak municipal administrative structures, inconstant public service provision and an increase in economic inequality. The subsequent growing demand for goods and services can only be approached and met at the local level.
While cities are closest to the actual implementation of energy and climate action, local administrations face immense challenges. The mandate for energy supply and urban electrification in cities often lies with national energy utilities and national regulatory bodies. In many cases only energy efficiency related topics are coordinated at the municipal level. Vertical integration of energy governance is extremely vital in order to address these challenges and assess which policy options and approaches will enable progress towards reaching (I)NDC commitments. The New Urban Agenda adopted at Habitat III in October 2016 in Quito, shows how cities are closest to implementation and have an unprecedented opportunity to transform, decarbonise, enhance the resilience of their energy supply and to use through renewable energy and energy efficiency.
During this year’s COP22, EUEI PDF hosted a side event on future energy scenarios for African cities. The side event included various perspectives, among others from UCLG Africa, the Mayor of Chefchaouen (Morocco), the German Ministry of Environment (BMUB), the Institute for Development, Environment and Energy (IDE-E), the International Energy Agency (IEA) and ICLEI Africa. The stakeholders discussed opportunities and solutions to drive sustainable energy transition in African cities. Due to the sinking costs of low-carbon technologies, African cities have the potential to significantly improve their share of renewables and enhance energy efficiency while meeting increasing energy demand. The main objective of the session was to discuss the role of city administrations for the transition to sustainable energy supply of urban settlements.
The workshop aimed to:
highlight opportunities emerging from the energy scenarios for decision-makers in the public sector, private sector, civil society and academia;
collect best-practice cases for energy action in African cities;
acknowledge the need for vertical integration of energy governance between national, region and municipal governmental bodies to achieve effective energy action in cities.
The agenda can be found in the download section on the right.
The workshop's content was based on the study 'Future Energy Scenarios for African Cities – Unlocking Opportunities for Climate Responsive Development' which the EUEI PDF is currently conducting. If you want to learn more about the study, please click here.
The event was part of the COP22 Renewable Energy Track organised by IRENA.