Africa's Clean Energy Transition: Scaling Up Local Action
About the Webcast
In the wake of the COVID-19 crisis, the renewable energy industry has proven to be more resilient to global shocks compared to other energy sectors but scaling up local action will be vital to build momentum around the energy transition in Africa. In this crucial time, we must continue empowering local leaders and promoting their efforts to drive progress towards a clean energy future, complementing government action to mitigate the health, economic and social challenges we are now facing.
Diversity, leadership and sustainability will be the overarching principles shaping the conversation on the way forward to drive the energy transition in Africa. The “Africa’s Clean Energy Transition: Scaling Up Local Action” session convenes a multi-stakeholder group of young thought leaders and innovators from the public sector, private sector, civil society and academia, all working across wind, solar, off-grid and other renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies to promote Africa’s energy transition.
This will be a moderated one-hour roundtable conversation between young clean energy pioneers working in Ghana, Kenya and South Africa. This session is organised by the Global Wind Energy Council and REN21, in association with the “REvolutionaries: The Steve Sawyer Memorial Award” program.
Opening remarks on Africa’s clean energy transition
- Arthouros Zervos, President, REN21
Roundtable discussion with young clean energy pioneers in Africa
- Chibeze Ezekiel, Executive Coordinator, Strategic Youth Network for Development (SYND) in Ghana
- Liesel Kassier, Head of Green Manufacturing Research, Toyota Wessels Institute of Manufacturing Studies in South Africa
- Rebekah Shirley, Chief of Research, Power for All in Kenya
- Wangari Muchiri, Programme Development Manager, HIVOS Foundation in Nairobi
- Linda Munyengeterwa, Regional Industry Director, Infrastructure and Natural Resources, IFC
Linda is the Regional Industry Director of Infrastructure Middle East & Africa at the International Finance Corporation (IFC). IFC—a member of the World Bank Group—is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. Linda leads investment operations and advisory services in energy, transportation, telecommunication, media and technology, mining, and municipal and environmental infrastructure across the two regions. She oversees a debt and equity portfolio of over $4 billion. Prior to her current role, Linda served as the Portfolio Manager for IFC’s Core Infrastructure assets in Sub-Saharan Africa, responsible for nearly $2bn worth of assets at the time. Linda is a member of IFC’s global and regional management teams.
Prior to joining IFC, Linda worked as an investment banker in the mergers and acquisition teams of JPMorgan and Fleming Martin. Prior to that she was a manager at Pricewaterhouse Coopers where she served her articles before qualifying as a chartered accountant.
Arthouros Zervos is the President of the Renewable Energy Policy Network for the 21st Century (REN21) since 2013. He is a Professor Emeritus at the National Technical University of Athens. He has been Chairman and CEO of the Greek electricity utility Public Power Corporation (PPC) as well as Chairman of the PPC Renewables, both from 2009 to 2015.
He has more than 35 years of high level expertise in policy, science, research and technology across the renewable energy sector. He led key European and International renewable energy bodies and has acted as policy advisor to Governments, EU bodies and policy fora.He has been President of the European Wind Energy Association (EWEA) from 2001 to 2013, President of the European Renewable Energy Council (EREC) from 2000 to 2012 and President of the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) from 2005 to 2010. In 2013 he received the “Poul La Cour” prize for outstanding achievement in wind energy. He was the lead author of the White Paper on Renewable Sources of Energy for the EC in 1997.
Chibeze is the Executive Coordinator of the Strategic Youth Network for Development (SYND), a youth-oriented NGO that promotes youth inclusion in the governance of the Natural Resources and Environmental sector. He was recently appointed as Panel Member of International Experts on the Environment of Peace 2022 (EP 2022) project. He chairs the Youth in Natural Resources and Environmental Governance (Youth-NREG) Platform, and is currently leading the Youth in Renewable Energy Movement campaign to influence the development and utilization of Renewables in Ghana.
Liesel Kassier is the Head of Green Manufacturing Research at the Toyota Wessels Institute of Manufacturing Studies and is based in Durban, South Africa. She worked for the Kwa Zulu Natal Provincial government as Chair of the provincial renewable energy working group on a series of projects to bring together private and public stakeholders to unlock opportunities in renewable energy, such as the establishment of the Kwa Zulu Natal Renewable Energy Fund and a local Energy Trading Agency.
Dr. Rebekah Shirley is the Chief of Research at Power for All where she works to create widespread public access to critical energy data and insights. Rebekah’s research explores innovative and collaborative approaches to energy service delivery and unlocking community impacts. Her work has driven direct action in Nigeria, Uganda, and Kenya. Rebekah was featured as an ESI Africa Power and Energy Leader in 2019 and was named Africa Utility Week’s 2018 Outstanding Young Leader in Energy. Rebekah was a University of California Chancellor’s Fellow and is now a Visiting Research Fellow at Strathmore University.
Wangari Muchiri is a Programme Development Manager at HIVOS Foundation, and is based in Nairobi, Kenya where she is currently developing an innovative energy access pilot program to create solar-based microgrid eco-systems across Africa using blockchain technology. Wangari is the inaugural winner of the “Revolutionaries: The Steve Sawyer Memorial Award.” In 2019, she was selected as one of the Obama Leaders for Africa by the Obama Foundation, she participated in the Women in Wind Global Leadership Program and was selected as one of the Top 3 Women under 30 in STEM by the Mawazo Institute.