West Africa Emerges as Leading Region in Africa for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (free report)

 press release  Comments Off on West Africa Emerges as Leading Region in Africa for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (free report)
Nov 122014
 

PRESS RELEASE | Contact GAELLE GOURMELON | For release: Wednesday, November 12, 2014REN21_ECOWAS_2014

Although access to energy services remains severely constrained in the region, renewables and energy efficiency measures contribute to improved access

Washington, D.C.The ECOWAS Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Status Reportproduced collaboratively by REN21 and ECREEE with lead authorship from the Worldwatch Institute, provides a regional perspective on the renewable energy and energy efficiency market and industry development in West Africa. (…)

“This report presents countries undergoing rapid change, including in the energy sector,” says Alexander Ochs, Director of the Worldwatch Institute’s Climate and Energy Program. “While we are witnessing important projects throughout the region, most ECOWAS countries are just starting to make use of the enormous renewable energy potentials at their doorsteps—and on their roofs, too. With national policies and regional cooperation just taking shape, the big renewable energy boom in West Africa is yet to come. An economically, socially, and environmentally prosperous Africa can only be built on the foundation of a sustainable energy system.”

Please find the full press release and link to the report [here].

Is Africa’s Nuclear Power Renaissance Heading Into An Abyss?

 online interview  Comments Off on Is Africa’s Nuclear Power Renaissance Heading Into An Abyss?
Mar 212014
 

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By D.A. Barber AFKI Original

South Africa, which currently relies on coal for more than 85 percent of its electricity, wants to wean itself off fossil fuels by using more nuclear power by 2030. Kenya, Nigeria, and other sub-Saharan countries have similar aspirations and are not far behind. (…)

Nuclear power plant construction has stagnated worldwide, according to an October 2013 report from U.S.-based Worldwatch Institute. 

Nuclear is the only mainstream power source – including all of the renewables and all the fossil fuels – that is stagnant and has actually had negative growth, said Alexander Ochs, director of the Climate and Energy Program at Worldwatch Institute, in an AFKInsider interview.

The reason for that stagnation of nuclear? It’s not that countries are forbidden to build them — it’s simply economics, Ochs said. Utilities are unwilling to carry the high costs and the high risks. (…)

“I’m just not sure why you would go down a nuclear route, which is extremely expensive,” Worldwatch Institute’s Ochs told AFKInsider. “You’re not building a nuclear power plant in a couple years. It’s a 15-year project. South Africa has a lot of coal left. I’m not a huge fan of getting the coal out of the ground and burning it, but it gives you time for a transitional strategy towards renewable technologies that are actually using the enormous potentials that you have in the country. To me it doesn’t make any sense.” (…) Continue reading »