The president of African Development Bank (AfDB), Mr. Akinwunmi Adesina, has unfolded the bank’s $500 million green base load scheme that would scrap coal power stations across Africa and switch to renewable energy.
Adesina who disclosed while addressing a gathering of leaders and officials from almost 200 countries at the United Nations Climate Action Summit held in New York, said the scheme will be rolled out 2020.
He outlined efforts to shutter coal-fired power plants and build the “largest solar zone in the world” in the arid Sahel belt.
“Coal is the past, and renewable energy is the future. For us at the AfDB, we’re getting out of coal,” he said.
He said the green base load scheme will yield $5 billion of investment that will help African countries transition from coal and fossil fuel to renewable energy.
The AfDB chief also talked about plans for $20 billion of investments in solar and clean energy that would provide the region’s 250 million people with 10,000 MW of electricity.
“There’s a reason God gave Africa sunlight,” said Adesina.
In his remarks, the UN secretary general, Mr. Antonio Guterres took a swipe at the “dying fossil fuel industry.”
He said it was still not too late to keep the global rise in temperatures below the benchmark figure of 1.5 degrees Celsius.
“But it will require fundamental transformations in all aspects of society — how we grow food, use land, fuel our transport and power our economies.
“We need to link climate change to a new model of development — fair globalisation — with less suffering, more justice, and harmony between people and the planet,” he added.
Guterres said mankind must reduce greenhouse gas emissions to limit global warming to about 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial temperatures to stave off the worst-case predictions of scientists.