Investment in renewable energy in Africa is at an “alarming” level despite the continent’s enormous potential, according to a report by the consulting firm BloombergNEF released on November 9. “Only $2.6 billion in capital was deployed for wind, solar, geothermal and other renewable energy projects in 2021, the lowest in 11 years.” Global renewable energy investments climbed 9 percent year-over-year to their highest level in history last year. Meanwhile, they fell by 35% in Africa, which accounts for only 0.6% of the $434 billion invested in renewable energy worldwide.
The continent, which still relies heavily on expensive and polluting fossil fuels for power generation, is falling behind “despite Africa’s exceptional natural resources, rapidly growing demand for electricity and an improving policy environment,” notes BNEF. In particular, Africa has clear potential in solar power but is home to only 1.3% of the world’s solar capacity. The report also highlights the high concentration of investments in a few countries: South Africa, Egypt, Kenya and Morocco, which since 2010 have accounted for nearly three quarters of the total.