Africa: 2022 - Africa's Practical Realities On Energy and Climate Change
A year ago, we welcomed 2021 with a sense of cautious optimism when the newly developed vaccines promised a shift in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. The focus turned towards building back better and doing things differently as many countries started to rethink and rebuild their shattered economies.
For African countries, however, the pandemic exposed the stark realities of global inequality. These countries scrambled to buttress their shattered food systems; they lacked industries to shift production to life-saving personal protection equipment even as young Africans were left out of schools because of lack of access to electricity and the internet, which made the shift to virtual learning almost impossible.
The pandemic revealed how Africa, despite its best efforts, was unprepared for some of the pressing emergencies of our times, be it the pandemic or the looming threat of climate change.
The UN Office of the Special Adviser for Africa is advocating for Africa to transition into 2022 with a sense of utmost urgency in building the continent's resilience. We firmly believe that the foundational building blocks to this resilience lie in Africans' access to reliable, affordable and sustainable energy.
For over a decade, the United Nations has touted energy as "The golden thread that connects economic growth, social equity, and environmental sustainability" to achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Energy is the key to unlocking Africa's future envisioned in the African Union's Agenda 2063.
Whether it is for economic transformation, ensuring food security, digitalizing education, revolutionizing health systems, building manufacturing and industrialization capacities, or sustaining peace by creating quality jobs and delivering services, no country in the world has achieved these ambitions without abundant and affordable access to energy.
A year ago, we welcomed 2021 with a sense of cautious optimism when the newly developed vaccines promised a shift in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. The focus turned towards building back better and doing things differently as many countries started to rethink and rebuild their shattered ec...
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