Across the continent, countries in Africa are gearing up for the energy transition by implementing policy and legislative frameworks that take into account the energy crisis and the need for a renewable, decarbonized, decentralized energy supply that addresses climate change and the commitments made under the Paris Agreement.
Ahead of the United Nations Climate Change Conference, COP 27, in Egypt in November this year, lawyers in Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Morocco, Namibia, Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania and Uganda have outlined the efforts taken by the governments in their countries to address this urgent need to harness renewable power. Such efforts are expected to provide exciting opportunities for investors in the African energy sector.
Oludare Senbore, Partner at Aluko & Oyebode in Nigeria, said that following the decisions taken during COP 26, the President of Nigeria announced the intention for Nigeria to achieve a net zero emission target by 2060.
“In order to achieve this objective, the Federal Government of Nigeria on 24 August 2022, launched its Energy Transition Plan (ETP). The ETP, which was launched by the Vice President on behalf of the Federal Government of Nigeria, has a double-pronged objective of achieving universal access to energy by 2030 and a net-zero emission target by 2060,” he explained.
“The foregoing actions support Nigeria’s energy transition drive, which includes an updated Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) under the Paris Agreement that was submitted in May 2021, and which highlights the country’s commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 20% unconditionally, and a conditional reduction target of 47% by 2030. This was followed up with the enactment of the Climate Change Act 2021 in November 2021, which provides a framework for achieving low greenhouse gas emissions (GHG), inclusive green growth and sustainable economic development in Nigeria.
“An additional legislative action by the Federal Government of Nigeria is the Petroleum Industry Act of 2021, that empowers the Nigerian National Petroleum Limited (a state-owned oil company) to engage in the business of renewables. This further confirms the country’s drive for energy transition, as do proposed amendments to the Electric Power Sector Reform Act, which provide that distribution companies must ensure that a portion of the electric power that they purchase must be from renewable sources. This is supposed to provide support for the growth of renewable power projects,” Senbore explained.