UN Climate Change
To be added.
The way energy is generated and consumed in cities in Sub-Saharan Africa must be transformed to ensure continued development and help rein in greenhouse gas emissions. This was the key conclusion reach by experts meeting at a regional climate and energy conference in Yaoundé, Cameroon in May, aimed at identifying innovative solutions for low-carbon urbanization.
Cities account for more than a third of energy consumption in Sub-Saharan Africa. The region’s high rate of urbanization (4.5 percent annually) is expected to push that figure to more than three-quarters of consumption by 2040 with a corresponding increase in urban-energy-related GHG emissions of 280 percent.
The Regional Conference on Sustainable Cities, Energy and Climate brought together about 100 experts and professionals from Sub-Saharan Africa to examine key aspects of energy and climate in the urban context: best practices, partnerships, business models, financing, renewable energy and energy efficiency, among other topics.
The conference was organized, with the support of the Cameroon Ministry of Housing and Urban Development, by UN-HABITAT in collaboration with l’Institute de la Phrancophonie pour le Développement Durable and the Regional Collaboration Center of Lomé, a partnership of the Banque Ouest Africaine de Développement and the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change secretariat.
Climate change and urbanization are recognized as central considerations in sustainable energy plans in Sub-Saharan African. In considering how to fuel their future development, countries are also looking at how their climate goals, including greenhouse gas emission reduction targets set under national climate action plans (known as Intended Nationally Determined Contributions), can be strengthened.
The experts meeting in Yaoundé took stock of the progress made in energy modeling and design for eco-buildings, as well as of development of renewable energy and energy efficiency solutions for sustainable cities. Recommendations are to:
Experts agreed on the urgent need to design and enforce a supportive policy framework and on the need to expand and consolidate regional collaboration and international partnerships. This demand was reiterated by H.E. Minister of Housing and Urban Development, Mr. Jean Claude Mbwentchou, in his closing remarks.
Capacity-building and education for climate action were also recognized as imperative, with particular emphasis on making younger generations more knowledgeable about environmental challenges and available technological solutions.
With this in mind, a five-day training course for 40 young people was organized in conjunction with the regional conference. The training focused on renewable energy household technologies.
The regional conference closed with the issuance of certificates to the young trainees, who presented self-built solar lamps.
Photo Crédits: UNFCCC/Regional Collaboration Centre Lomé