With an average of 325 days of bright sunlight every year, solar power remains one of Africa’s most abundant but scarcely used resources. Solar power/electricity is produced when the fancy, silver-colored and shiny sheets (commonly known as ‘solar panels’ are used to capture and convert the sun’s radiation to electricity. These panels (which contain photo-voltaic cells) come in different models, shapes and sizes.
Of all the other alternative and renewable sources of energy available for Africa’s future – wind, sun and water – the sun (solar power) is the most abundant and free!
1. Solar energy is the fastest and cheapest way to light up Africa: Because most of Africa sits on the earth’s equator, the sun’s radiation reaches many parts of the continent including the remotest parts – villages, mountain tops, anywhere and everywhere! This raw energy already touches the parts of the continent that power grids and infrastructure have still not reached – after many decades!
2. The demand for cleaner and greener alternative power sources is gaining momentum: A significant portion of electricity generated on our continent is from non-renewable sources like petrol, natural gas, coal and other fossil fuels. These fuels remain expensive and have dangerous effects on our health, the environment and climate.
Potential benefits of renewable energy to Africa
• Renewable energy sources offer numerous benefits ranging from contributing to economic growth through the creation of new enterprises and jobs to mitigating the effects of climate change and providing electricity to rural areas.
• Renewable energy development can among other things drive economic growth, create new jobs and enhance human health and welfare at the national level.
• The fast-global growth of the renewable energy industry would foster economic growth mainly through investment and direct and indirect jobs creation. According to the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), 26% of the total reduction in carbon emissions worldwide in 2010 was on account of efficient gains in renewable energy sources. Increasing the share of renewable energy as a source of power generation will likely accelerate further reductions in these emissions.
• In rural areas, the transmission and distribution of power generated from fossil fuels is very costly. Therefore, using off-grid renewable energy sources in rural areas will help increase access to basic services, including lighting, communications, and water pumping. The use of these increasingly affordable technologies would facilitate the integration and development of African rural populations.
So, What’s Next?
Menes Konsult Limited and Europlaw Limited, were established by African lawyers in the diaspora to serve foreign companies operating in Africa or thinking of expanding to the continent. We provide comprehensive fulltime services to ensure success in Africa. Our specially trained and indoctrinated staff performs a wide range of tasks from the mundane (e.g. in-country chauffeur services) to the sophisticated and professional (legal, accounting, financial services) needed to set up presence and successfully operate in Africa. We also provide resources like co-work office spaces, temporary residential housing, and credible and reliable information regarding who to deal with, what areas to avoid, and other information and services that allow a foreign company to “look before leaping” into Africa. We also work with African governments and private companies to access foreign funds for viable projects. Contact us today at email@example.com to discuss how we can help you.