AEEP Forum 2022 Highlights How African-European Collaboration Can Shape the Energy Transitions and Trigger Political Action
Bonn, Germany – 12 September 2022
On 7 September 2022, the Africa-EU Energy Partnership (AEEP) hosted the second instalment of the AEEP Forum, titled “Advancing the Green Gateway Between Africa and Europe – Seizing COP27 for energy access and climate stability”. More than 650 attendees discussed how to realise future energy systems in Africa and Europe that will allow human prosperity in a climate-compatible way.
Ahead of the 27th Conference of the Parties (COP27) to be hosted in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt, in November, the importance of strong bi-continental ties was underlined.
“We call upon our friends and colleagues from the EU to ensure the just and ambitious energy transition during COP27.”
– Dr Yasmine Fouad, Minister of Environment, Egypt
“Africa and Europe, through our longstanding partnerships, will be very influential in the development of the global energy agenda and the success of COP27. The AEEP has been key in enabling fruitful collaboration to identify and address common challenges and priorities in the energy sector and ensure continuous learning from each continent. Today’s AEEP Forum offers us an opportunity to pursue that work, deepening and sharing our insights on energy and climate in Africa.”
– H.E. Birgitte Markussen, Ambassador, Head of the EU Delegation to the African Union
The speakers at the AEEP Forum emphasised the importance of re-aligning the African and European climate and energy agendas in the aftermath of the global pandemic and the implications of dependence on fossil fuels, as the Russian gas crisis has shown.
“For Africa, a transition to green energy provides the chance to address many growing issues. We are therefore very pleased with our collaboration with the EU in promoting green energy.“
– H.E. Dr Amani Abou-Zeid, Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy, African Union Commission
An interactive panel discussion, including video inputs from Ms Jennifer Morgan, Special Envoy for International Climate Action, Germany, former Executive Director, Greenpeace International, Ms Damilola Ogunbiyi, CEO, Sustainable Energy for All (SEforALL), and Dr Antonio Maria Afonso Pedro, Acting Executive Secretary of the Economic Commission for Africa, Economic Commission for Africa (ECA), addressed ways in which Africa and Europe can mutually support each other’s energy and climate ambitions. The panellists concluded that although the two continents have different starting positions and must approach the transition from their unique perspectives, the aim is the same: both face a scarcity of their energy supply and need to ramp up massively on renewable energy technology.
“As for Europe, the pathway is an immediate switch to cleaner energy. But Africa will have to rely both on renewable and non-renewable in the short- and mid-term to accelerate access, so it needs to address existing gaps while focusing on moving ahead.”
– Dr Kamugisha Kazaura, DIE Director, AUC
“The discussion about the transition on both continents is often very polarised. To overcome this and have a more granular discussion, spaces need to be created where the diversity of realities is reflected by the diversity of voices. If we manage to drive these dialogues, we will also receive societal support for the transition, which is fundamental.”
– Ms Rana Adib, Executive Director, REN21
Two parallel roundtable debates, in English and French, focused on infrastructure and financing needs required to realise a sustainable African energy system of the future, and the role natural gas and green gases play within people-centred energy transitions.
“It’s becoming clear that green hydrogen will be needed on both continents, but flexibility is needed on the European side on questions like what is green hydrogen or what is green ammonia? Because what may be possible in the European context may take longer for the African counterparts.”
– Jesse Scott, Director International Programme, AGORA
“According to IEA estimates, Africa has the renewable energy potential to produce up to 5000 Mt per year at a cost below USD 2/kg – an amount of hydrogen-based energy that is more than the total energy supply today. There are, of course, some uncertainties, such as the pace at which the international market for hydrogen will develop or questions of standardisation and certification. Hydrogen is a long-term opportunity and hopefully harnessing it will bring interesting prospects for the continent.”
– Rita Madeira, Africa Program Officer, IEA
Participants of the AEEP Forum were also able to visit seven thematic exchanges, hosted by African and European initiatives and organisations working on different aspects of the energy transition, including energy financing infrastructure development, energy regulation and youth participation, to network and deepen ties for successful collaborations.
To revisit the event and watch recordings of all sessions, please go to: https://app.swapcard.com/event/aeep2022
The AEEP Forum 2022 Spotlight is now available below:
For media inquiries, please reach out to: email@example.com Nina Simberg-Koulumies, PR & Communications Specialist, Secretariat of the Africa-EU Energy Partnership (AEEP)
About the Africa-EU Energy Partnership
Established in 2007 as one of the partnerships of the Joint Africa-EU Strategy, the Africa-EU Energy Partnership (AEEP) is Africa and Europe’s gateway for joint action on a green energy future. With an unmatched overview of the political processes and initiatives across both continents, the AEEP maps, monitors and convenes the actions and stakeholders that drive the African and European energy transformation. Providing a forum for political dialogue, knowledge sharing and peer connections, it enables Africa and Europe to make progress on their path to a sustainable energy future. Find more information at africa-eu-energy-partnership.org.