Namibia aims to be Africa’s energy capital

Miminster of mines and energy Tom Alweendo says Namibia is gearing up to become the sustainable energy capital of Africa.

Speaking at the Global Africa Hydrogen Summit conference in Windhoek yesterday, Alweendo confirmed that Namibia has the equivalent of 11 billion barrels of crude oil reserves offshore.

He said the country has the potential to produce green hydrogen at under US$1,5 (about N$28,63) per kilogram.

Alweendo said Namibia is committed to being part of the solution to the climate change crisis.

“Climate change is an inevitable force of nature, and climate innovation is our response to this inevitability. Despite collectively contributing less than 5% to global carbon emissions, Africa understands the importance of a pan-African approach to tackling climate change,” he said.

Alweendo said the focus for Namibia is on developing and implementing low-carbon technologies that would not only reduce emissions, but also drive sustainable economic growth.

“Maximising their socio-economic impact is essential to ensuring long-term viability and equitable prosperity through high-quality jobs,” he said.

Alweendo said Namibia has done with green hydrogen what has never been done in Africa.

“Namibia has made large portions of land available, adapted legislative frameworks, engaged global captains of industry and raised billions of dollars to pioneer low-carbon industrialisation at scale – something that has never been done before in the history of the continent,” he said.

“By integrating green hydrogen as a career alongside more traditional careers in the energy mix, our goal is to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions and reduce reliance on finite resources,” he said.

The conference comes in preparation of a green hydrogen summit that will be held in Windhoek in September.

The summit will be held under the theme ‘From Ambition to Action: Fuelling Africa’s Green Industrial Revolution’.

Speaking at the conference, Namibia Investment Promotion and Development Board (NIPDB) chief executive Nangula Uaandja said a metric to measure the success of the green energy industry in Africa is important.

“I think success is when Africa has taken up its rightful place as a player that is really bringing economic development in a green manner.

“So green industrialisation, not only for Africa, but really bringing about an economic agenda for the world that is driven from a green point of view,” she said.

Uaandja said job creation would be another factor to consider when measuring success.

“The other one is if we are able to create jobs and reduce poverty, unemployment and inequality in Africa by bringing about economic development through industrialisation without damaging the planet, or at least minimise that damage to the greatest possible extent,” Uaandja said.

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