Opening remarks from the Chair
Ministerial Address: Towards a renewable energy future in Kenya
Keynote Address: The African Renewable Energy Initiative: Unlocking the potential of Africa’s energy future
Don't miss this timely assessment of renewable energy market progress across East Africa, providing top line data and information on developments around the region and commentary on what still needs to happen to achieve renewable energy's full potential in the region.
A recent IRENA report supports what many have long suspected, that Africa is on the brink of incredible growth in the renewable energy market. The report forecasts that renewable energy on the continent may more than quadruple by 2030 to as much as 22 percent compared to current levels of around 5 percent. The business prospects are clear, but most importantly renewable energy sources provide a potentially life-changing opportunity for the estimated 75 percent of the population in East Africa currently living without electricity as well as creating jobs and boosting national and economic development. This session will bring together policymakers and leading industry experts in active dialogue to share experiences and best practice with the aim of driving renewable energy growth and development in sub-Saharan Africa.
Whilst solar and hydropower are often considered to be the most economically viable, sustainable and immediately actionable renewable energy options in sub-Saharan Africa, that does not discount the significant potential of alternative renewable sources including wind power, geothermal and biomass. Wind energy commitments in Kenya skyrocketed from zero in 2011 to $1.1 billion in 2012. The renowned Lake Turkana wind power project has garnered international interest, attracting the largest inward investment into Kenya since its independence and upon completion due to be the largest wind farm in Africa. Africa is also welcoming the largest biomass power generation plant to be hooked into the national grid. Geothermal projects continue to emerge with Ethiopia's recent US$4 billion geothermal plant setting the benchmark for projects in the region. This session will bring together a panel of experts to debate the merits, cost-effectiveness, suitability, viability and sustainability of alternative sources of renewable energy and their potential success in the region, touching on key topics including:
The efficient use of energy resources is integral to renewables and clean technology principles. This session will address some of the key questions facing the development of viable energy efficiency frameworks in East Africa.
Closing remarks from the Chair
A 2015 UNEP report brought to light the dramatic increase in investment into developing countries' renewable energy projects, with Africa and the Middle East attracting a staggering US$12.6 billion of investment into renewable energy in 2014 up from US$8.7 billion the previous year. In fact, Kenya set a new national record, attracting an astounding US$1.3 billion in renewable energy investment in 2014. Governments are taking a progressive approach to drive renewable energy growth and development, collaborating with private sector partners and exploring alternative finance structures to achieve ambitious energy targets. However the combination of a lack of clarity in financial close, technology risks as well as exposure to currency, interest rate and inflation fluctuations can impact the perceived bankability of renewable energy projects. This session will bring together investors, financiers and leading analysts to share their thoughts and experiences on sustainable financing options for renewable projects in East Africa.
This session will look at what opportunities exist outside the regulated PPA market for open market and private PPAs.
There is a compelling case for solar power opportunities in the region, with PV prices at an all time low and significant advancements in distributed and micro-generation technologies. Given the inefficiencies and high costs associated with alternative power sources, solar has proven hugely popular in places where it has been available and governments across the region are working hard to develop sustainable models to drive solar power projects. This session will bring together leading authorities and solar market experts to share their insights on the future of solar power in East Africa.
According to the World Bank, hydropower represents the most economically viable, large-scale source of energy for sub-Saharan Africa. For this reason, nine of the 15 energy projects prioritized by African governments within the 2012-2020 Programme for Infrastructure Development in Africa are investments in hydropower. Similar to solar power, the greatest opportunities in hydropower in the immediate term are in small-scale, off-grid generation. Our panel of industry experts will come together to discuss developments in hydropower and how the region can better exploit the full potential of this renewable resource going forward.
Kenya has taken a leading role and is seen as a driving force behind renewable energy in Africa. The country's long-term development plan in line with Kenya Vision 2030 is to produce over 19,000MW from renewable sources by 2030.
The Ugandan government's policy vision has a significant emphasis on renewable energy development, with the aim of increasing the use of renewable energy from current level of 4 percent to over 60 percent of the country's total energy consumption by the year 2017.
Ethiopia has one of the world's lowest rates of access to modern electricity, with over 92 percent of the country's energy supply currently derived from waste and biomass sources. However, Ethiopia's renewables potential is huge, with hydropower potential alone estimated to be as much 45,000 MW.
Countries across sub-Saharan Africa have struggled with significant challenges ranging from political instability and widespread poverty to insufficient grid infrastructure and a lack of coordinated, coherent energy policy. However, in recent years there has been a tremendous spike of interest – and investment – in renewable energy potential with regional leaders earmarking energy sector reform as a key focus of national development programmes. How can the region develop a clear, collaborative approach, between nations as well as public and private sector partners, to deliver real, sustained change and development not only in the energy sector but ultimately in improving the quality of life for millions of Africans in the process.
Policymaker: What more can regional governments do to diversify their energy mix and create a regulatory framework that incentivizes and enables renewable energy project development?
Developer: What are key factors influencing development decisions and how can we align public and private sector objectives to exploit the full potential of East Africa's renewable energy resources?
Investor: What lessons can be learnt from public and private investment experiences in renewable energy projects and how are investors and financiers currently assessing market opportunities around the region? What structures need to be in place to facilitate capital into renewable energy projects?
Adviser: What is the future of renewable energy in East Africa? What are the key challenges and opportunities facing the industry in the immediate, medium and long-term?
© DMG Events Middle East 2016. Please note that the programme, sessions and speakers are subject to change, pending final confirmation and/or any unforeseen circumstances.