EU-Africa Renewable Energy Partnership Launched

At the recent High Level Meeting of the Africa-EU Energy Partnership (AEEP) in Vienna, EU Commissioner for Development Andris Piebalgs and EU Commissioner for Energy Gunther Oettinger launched the Renewable Energy Cooperation Programme (RECP) together with the African Union and announced a planned contribution of Eur5 million to start the programme.

This programme of cooperation is due to contribute to the African renewable energy targets for 2020. It aims at bringing relevant renewable energy technologies to the market in Africa.

EU Commissioner for Development, Andris Piebalgs.

“Today 1.6 billion people worldwide have no access to electricity, most of them in sub-Saharan Africa and Southern Asia. Poor energy systems undermine growth potential in these countries from 1 to 2%. We need a reliable source of electricity to fuel development,” comments EU Commissioner for Development, Andris Piebalgs. “Africa has a vast untapped renewable energy potential, ranging from hydro, to solar, wind, geothermal and biomass which could be used to ensure millions of people access to electricity.”

The Road Map for the Implementation of the EU-Africa Energy Partnership includes three priority areas and the following targets:

Energy access: Africa and the EU will take joint action to bring access to modern and sustainable energy services to at least an additional 100 million Africans by 2020. This will be a contribution to the African objective of giving access to modern and sustainable energy to an additional 250 million people.

Energy security: Africa and the EU will take joint action to improve energy security by doubling the capacity of cross-border electricity interconnections and by doubling the use of natural gas in Africa, as well as doubling African gas exports to Europe.

Renewable energy and energy efficiency: Africa and the EU will take joint action such as:

* building 10,000 MW of new hydropower facilities;

* building at least 5,000 MW of wind power;

* building 500 MW of solar energy and tripling the capacity of other renewables;

* raising energy efficiency in Africa in all sectors.

The Renewable Energy Cooperation Programme is established for a ten years period. The proposed contribution of Eur5 million will support a three year start up phase of the programme. It will come from the EC fast-start funding for climate action under the Environment Thematic Programme of the Development Cooperation Instrument.

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