Africa Urged to Pick Solar Over Oil and Gas

African countries that are too dependent on fossil fuel exports in the short-term, as opposed to investing in the clean energy transition, are risking their longer-term energy security and economic stability, according to a new report by Carbon Tracker. Although oil and gas companies are currently enjoying a period of high profits, the think tank has estimated that those profits will be halved by 2040, due to decreasing demand as the world transitions to renewables, such as wind and solar. As a result, African nations would “be better advised to accelerate investment in renewables and low carbon alternatives”, the report said. The continent has an average standalone solar capacity factor of 17%, but currently only represents 2% of global utility-scale solar electricity generation, thus meaning there is huge opportunity to invest in the upscaling of solar energy capacity, it added. By transitioning to solar, African nations will both reduce the risk of being exposed to stranded fossil fuel assets and will be less reliant on importing from other energy-producing countries, Carbon Tracker said.  

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