Connect with us

Environment

Developing Countries Require a Balanced, Inclusive, and Multilateral Approach to Climate Change to avert Poverty by 2030

Discussed in a collaborative virtual meeting at OPEC’s Ministerial Roundtable on Energy, Climate and Sustainable Development, industry leaders emphasized the role that natural gas and developed countries will play in Africa’s energy transition

Published

on

Africa is on the precipice of both an energy sector and economic transformation, with the continent making accelerated efforts to develop its immense resources. Driven by the continent’s growing demand for energy, and the increased capacity of local service companies in resource-rich countries, Africa is committed to using its natural resources as a catalyst for sustained economic growth. In the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, this trend has become increasingly more important, especially if Africa is to eradicate poverty by 2030. Yet, unilaterally formulated climate mitigation objectives often fail to consider the adverse effects this agenda has on developing countries. With the number of people without access to electricity threatening to increase with the pandemic, the need for a balanced, inclusive, and multilateral approach to climate change mitigation has been noted.

With the aim of discussing key challenges and opportunities relating to global action in tackling climate change, specifically in the context of sustainable development and poverty alleviation, the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) Secretary General, H.E. Mohammad Sanusi Barkindo, held a virtual Ministerial Roundtable discussion on Energy, Climate and Sustainable Development on 6 September 2021. Participants included representatives from OPEC member countries and non-OPEC oil producing countries, India as well as international organizations including the African Petroleum Producers Association (APPO), the African Energy Chamber (AEC), the Gas Exporting Countries Forum (GECF), the International Energy Forum (IEF), the African Refiners & Distributors Association, and the Organization of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries (OAPEC).

Climate Change Remains one of the Greatest Challenges of our Time

The International Energy Agency (IEA) posits, in its 2021 Global Energy Review, that global emissions from energy use is set to increase by 1.5 billion tons to 33 billion tons in 2021, despite a 5.8% reduction in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic and imposed lockdowns. With the energy sector accounting for 72% of total emissions, urgent action is required. In response, the international community, through the Paris Climate Agreement, has opted for the immediate reduction in fossil fuel-directed financing, advocating for the switch to renewable energy sources and the end of hydrocarbon use worldwide. The impacts of reduced finance for African oil and gas developments are significant, especially considering the reliance on foreign direct investment in expanding energy sectors and driving socioeconomic development. Despite intentions to reduce greenhouse emissions globally, these initiatives threaten to further accentuate energy poverty in Africa.

The Need for a Common-but-Differentiated Approach

In the OPEC-led Ministerial Roundtable, one of the recurring themes was that Africa requires a flexible approach to mitigating climate change. With energy poverty eradication a primary objective for every African state, the continent needs all of its oil and gas resources if it is to ensure long-term, sustainable economic growth. According to H.E. Diamantino Pedro Azevedo, Angola’s Minister of Mineral Resources and Petroleum, “there is a need for an inclusive, pragmatic and holistic approach to mitigate and adapt to climate change, taking into account national circumstances and priorities, as well as the principles of equity and common-but-differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities.”

“Developing countries are part of the solution, not the problem. It could be argued that choosing one of two energy options will not lead to the expected sustainability. Pursuing such a narrow strategy could even exacerbate the challenge of energy poverty in the world. With 800 million people without access to electricity, the flexibility to use a variety of energy carriers will lead to increased access in all countries,” stated H.E. Bijan Namdar Zanganeh, Minister of Petroleum for the Islamic Republic of Iran.

If the continent is to ensure effective economic growth in the wake of the pandemic, countries need to be able to develop their oil and gas resources. Rather than eliminate hydrocarbons, by utilizing their resources for stronger, ore sustained economic development, energy poverty can be eradicated by 2030. Accordingly, the Roundtable introduced the role that natural gas, in particular, will play in Africa’s energy future.

“The GECF gives a voice to natural gas as part of the solution to balanced, sustainable development. There has been a commitment by the GECF heads of state to increase the pace of global energy transition and the positive contribution of natural gas to climate mitigation. We need to emphasize the need to consider all energy sources without discrimination. Natural gas and oil will provide more than 50% of global energy demand by 2050 and will continue to be responsible for inclusive economic growth for decades to come. Gas is one of the global enablers to reduce emissions,” stated H.E. Yury Sentyurin, Secretary General of the GECF.

“We need the energy sector to work for local development. A short-term priority should be how to harness these resources in a sustainable way. The gas sector, in particular, is a key driver of this dynamic,” added Rolake Akinkugbe-Filani, Advisory Board Member of the AEC.

“There can be no constructive dialogue in energy transition without energy poverty being placed at the forefront of the debate. Our planet will only be better if we all work together. We believe in Africa, that oil and gas is part of the future. We have an obligation to develop our resources while following the climate change mitigation,” stated NJ Ayuk, Executive Chairman of the AEC.

Collaboration is Essential for Progress

In the move to eradicate energy poverty, unilateral climate mitigation strategies threaten to hinder progress. Therefore, the need for a collaborative approach has been emphasized in which both developed and developing countries engage in an inclusive debate. As H.E. Barkindo suggests, “we need multilateralism at the center of our energy, climate and sustainable development future.” Accordingly, developing countries should not be left out of the debate on climate mitigation, but should take on an inclusive role.

“The energy transition should be accompanied by a world-wide debate. With concerted policy and open debate, we will find a path to retain a solution and reduce the impact of climate change. We do not need more declaration, we need urgent action,” stated H.E. Tareck El Aissami, Minister of Oil of Venezuela.

What’s more, Africa’s economic and energy future requires support from developed countries, “including financial resources, technology development and transfer and capacity building to aid adaptation and back increased ambitions for climate action,” as H.E. Barkindo stated. Rather than enforce “unilateral coercion measures that effect sustainable development, climate mitigation should go beyond the commercial agenda to serve men, women and households for the construction of the transition that includes energy security,” added H.E. Aissami. Accordingly, a collaborative approach between developing countries, who require an adapted strategy to mitigation, and developed countries, who hold the financial resources needed to help Africa in its energy transition and sustainable development.

“The capacities and national circumstances of developing countries must be taken into account in all actions. In order to not render countries already struggling even more besieged, it is necessary to carefully consider the adverse socio-economic impacts on these countries due to mitigation activities, in order to identify remediation measures and share best practices,” concluded H.E. Barkindo.

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Environment

Kenya’s Environment Minister implores developed countries to support Reduction Of Green House Emissions

Tobiko implores developed countries to support climate change programmes

Published

on

The Eighth secretary-general of the United Nations Mr Ban Ki-moon (left) engages Environment and Forestry Cabinet Secretary Keriako Tobiko on the sidelines of the Global Centre on Adaptation (GCA) High-Level meeting in Rotterdam, Netherlands.

Cabinet Secretary for   Environment and Forestry in Kenya Keriako Tobiko has called on developed countries to take leadership in reducing their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.

The Minister who is the Country’s Director of Public Prosecutions also called for the provision of mechanisms for adaptation because they contribute at least 80% of GHGs.

Leading the Kenyan delegation to the ongoing Global Center on Adaptation (GCA) High-Level meetings in Rotterdam, Netherlands, the CS decried lack of commitment from the developed countries, the largest polluters, to support vulnerable countries that are suffering the consequences of the vagaries of climate change.

At the GCA High-Level Dialogue with Youth on “Accelerating Adaptation in a Climate Emergency” at the University of Groningen, Tobiko called on the youth to seize opportunities, use their large numbers, digital platforms and power to help reverse the effects of environmental pollution, saying the current destruction of the natural environment will affect future generations.

He lauded various players who are promoting bold and innovative partnerships for action to support the most vulnerable communities. Such players include the GCA, African Development Bank and African Union’s Africa Adaptation Acceleration Program, which is mobilizing US$25 billion to drive transformational adaptation actions on the African continent and seeks to propel locally-led adaptation efforts.

The 8th Secretary-General of the United Nations and Co-Chair of the Global Center on Adaptation, Mr Ban Ki-moon, called for bold solutions to tackle the crisis presented by climate change and, more so to, to support youth in contributing to curb climate change.

Citing former Nobel Laurette Wangari Maathai, he said, “Nature is very generous, but very unforgiving when disturbed.”

The event discussions were meant to explore how youth, academia and the most vulnerable communities can collaborate and spur bolder action on adaptation in response to the global climate emergency and consider concrete activities that can be taken in advance of and following the 2021 UN Climate Conference at Glasgow, COP26.

Among those who attended the meeting included former President H.E Mohamed Nasheed, of the Maldives, United Nations Under-Secretary-General and Executive Secretary of the Economic Commission for Africa, H.E. Vera Songwe Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia H.E. Rola Dashti, former Real Madrid soccer player Arjen Robben, Youth representatives of the University of Groningen among others.

A communique issued at the High-Level Dialogue meeting confirmed that our planet is warming faster than previously thought. We are now on track to reach 1.5 degrees Celsius (1.5°C) of warming above pre-industrial levels by the 2030s. “The next decade will see the Earth further heat up by approximately half of all the 1.1°C of global warming experienced throughout the entire period spanning the advent of the industrial era in the nineteenth century until today,” the communique said.

Continue Reading

Environment

Committed to African Exploration and Production, leading Oil & Gas Lawyer Nicolas Bonnefoy will Facilitate a Strong Discussion on Africa’s Energy Advancement at African Energy Week in Cape Town

Representing ASAFO & Co, No.1 law firm in Africa, and with an exclusive focus on Africa, Nicolas Bonnefoy is committed to improving Africa’s energy landscape, and will promote oil, gas and exploration in Cape Town.

Published

on

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, September 3, 2021/ — Nicolas Bonnefoy, Partner at ASAFO & Co, joins a myriad of internationally based oil and gas stakeholders all coming to Africa’s premier energy event, with a confirmation for his participation and attendance at African Energy Week (AEW) 2021 in Cape Town on the 9th-12th of November. Bringing a wealth of experience to Cape Town, and having represented oil and gas stakeholders from all over Africa, Nicolas will promote exploration and production and progressive and market-driven legislature at AEW 2021.

ASAFO & Co. – “2020 Law Firm of the Year” (Jeune Afrique Business+) – has offices in four main jurisdictions in Africa (Morocco, Ivory Coast, Kenya and South Africa), as well as London, Paris and Washington DC.

As partner at ASAFO & Co Nicolas has been instrumental in oil and gas legal affairs across the continent. His experience predominately consists of representing oil and gas companies in securing exploration and production rights and structuring, negotiating and implementing acquisitions and disposals throughout Africa. Recognizing the value of oil and gas for Africa’s energy and economic development, Nicolas is committed to improving exploration and license acquisition processes, acting on behalf of oil and gas companies and ensuring fair, productive procedures. At AEW 2021 in Cape Town, Bonnefoy will promote exploration, driving a strong discussion on the role oil and gas will play in Africa.

Meanwhile, Nicolas is also a strong advocate for market-driven regulation, having promoted the role that productive legislature plays in ensuring Africa is competitive for foreign capital. Committed to assisting African regulators navigate the challenging situation brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, and acting for States and national oil companies in reviewing petroleum regimes in Africa, Nicolas is focused on improving and shortening the legislative process in Africa. Accordingly, Nicolas will drive a strong discussion on sector enhancing regulation, oil and gas exploration, and coherent legislature in Cape Town.

“As African countries look to expand their energy sectors and accelerate long-term project success, government and national oil companies are turning to regulatory improvements in a bid to attract foreign investors and drive associated growth. As an advocate for progressive policies and African oil and gas development, Nicolas will be instrumental in ensuring emerging markets are open for business, national companies are ready to compete with international contenders, and African energy projects can come online faster. In Cape Town, Nicolas will be a valuable participant in the conversation regarding exploration and regulation, and we are excited to have him speak at Africa’s premier energy event,” stated NJ Ayuk, Executive Chairman of the African Energy Chamber.

Continue Reading

Business

Citigroup Head of Investment Banking Miguel Azevedo Confirms Attendance at AOG (Angola Oil and Gas) 2021 in Luanda, Angola

The importance of prioritizing the monetization of gas to accelerate electrification initiatives as a critical asset in driving economic growth in a post-COVID-19 era

Published

on

Miguel Azevedo, Citigroup Head of Investment Banking – Middle East, Africa (exc. S.A.) and Portugal, has confirmed his attendance at the Angola Oil & Gas Conference (AOG) (Angola Oil and Gas) 2021 conference, taking place in Luanda’s Centro de Convenções de Talatona (CCTA) from 09th – 10th September.  Miguel Azevedo will drive the discussion on the potential investment opportunities that will play a crucial role in economic growth in Angola, primarily through the divers.

As a confirmed participant, Miguel Azevedo will shape discussions on the investment potential of Angola’s energy industry from oil and gas exploration to petrochemicals and renewables; the importance of prioritizing the monetization of gas to accelerate electrification initiatives as a critical asset in driving economic growth in a post-COVID-19 era.

Since taking office, H.E. President Joao Lourenço launched the National Development Plan 2018-2022 and the revised Hydrocarbon Exploration Strategy 2020-2025 to intensify, research, and geologically evaluate concessions and accessible areas of sedimentary basins for exploration in Angola. The Ministry of Mineral Resources and Petroleum, headed by Minister H.E. Diamantino Pedro Azevedo and other significant stakeholders in Angola including  the National Oil, Gas and Biofuels Agency (ANPG) and Sonangol  are all actively exploring ways of adapting their operations to reflect growth in a post-COVID-19 era.

Miguel Azevedo will bring to AOG 2021 his experience from several World Economic Forum (WEF) conferences, where he has actively promoted the importance of investments in energy-related projects in Africa to accelerate its industrialization ambitions and economic growth. In Rwanda, Miguel Azevedo also steered meaningful discussions around connecting Africa’s resources through digital transformation, calling for increased investments in gas to power projects to increase Africa’s power generation capacity to have a competitive opportunity against other developed markets through digitalization.  Miguel Azevedo is a firm believer that economic growth hinges on power sector stability and effective electricity distribution; he constantly advocates for the diversification of energy portfolios, focusing on cleaner energy.

 

“Miguel Azevedo will drive the discussion on the potential investment opportunities that will play a crucial role in economic growth in Angola.”

The Angolan government is committed to promoting renewable energies and is focused on the energy transition. Over the last few years, there has been an increase in government spending on access to power projects, with a more significant commitment to solar power projects, in addition to the incentives for public and private partnerships in the power sector. Angola offers investors a unique opportunity to introduce capital, technology, and best practices to meet the country’s growing energy demand and economic development goals.

“We want to ensure we have the best-experienced minds to foster the good discussions that will lead to deals and projects that positively contribute to growing the Angolan economy. Miguel’s experience with investments in African markets will be essential to Sonangol and ANPG’s narrative to foment international investment in Angola,” states Joao Gaspar Marques, International Conference Director for Energy Capital and Power (ECP), the organizer of the AOG 2021 conference.

Miguel Azevedo joined Citigroup in 2010 as Head of Corporate and Investment Banking Portugal. In mid-2012, he was appointed Head of Investment Banking Africa (exc. S.A. & Egypt). In November 2017, Miguel was appointed Head of Investment Banking for the Middle East and Africa (ex S.A.).

AOG 2021 is the most highly anticipated energy event to take place, not only in Angola but in Africa in 2021. AOG 2021 is an exclusive, transformative, and sector-advancing platform for networking, deal-making, and investment partnerships that will drive Angola’s energy sector growth and success. Organized by ECP and under the auspices of the Ministry of Mineral Resources and Petroleum, AOG 2021 is committed to accelerating Angolan energy progress in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Continue Reading

Trending