Africa should reposition the energy industry for the future and become much more efficient with its energy resources, the Chief Executive Officer, Seplat Energy Plc, Mr. Roger Brown has said.
He urged African countries to accept the fact that energy has a key role to play in the future of the continent, and the integration of the energy value chain is essential for the continent’s anticipated progress.
The Seplat Energy CEO said this at the opening ceremony of the 41st Nigerian Association of Petroleum Explorationists (NAPE) International Conference and Exhibition, which is ongoing in Lagos. Brown delivered a stakeholder contribution to the theme “Repositioning the Oil & Gas Industry for Future Energy Dynamics”.
Brown said: “Repositioning the oil and gas sector for the future requires the understanding of certain fundamentals including accepting the fact that the sector will have a key role to play well into the future – particularly in Africa; that the energy industry needs to become much more efficient with its resources; and that the integration of the energy value chain is essential.
“Also, that a functioning energy backbone (Base load) is a barrier to wide-scale renewable energy. In all these, we must come to terms with the fact that Development and Environment must not become competing objectives.”
He said energy is critical to the region’s economic and social development.
According to industry data, more than 600 million Africans have no access to energy; more than 900 million Africans do not have access to clean cooking (with eight per cent energy access in rural West Africa); and fewer than half of the utilities in sub-Saharan Africa recover their operating costs.
Every year, the 48 countries of sub-Saharan Africa (combined population approximately 1bn)
generate roughly the same energy as Spain (with a population of approximately 45 million)
Industry sources say five-fold increase in investment is required to reach United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal 7 by 2030. There are 17 SDGs for Africa to achieve.
For the Energy Outlook, achieving Africa’s energy and climate goals means more than doubling energy investment this decade; of which the goal of universal access to modern energy calls for investment of USD 25 billion per year