COP28; African Nations Embrace Battery Energy Storage Systems (BESS) Consortium to Transform Energy Landscape

A wave of African countries has enthusiastically embraced the groundbreaking Battery Energy Storage Systems (BESS) Consortium, a multistakeholder partnership initiative launched during COP28. This initiative aims to revolutionize Africa’s energy landscape by fostering collaboration and innovation in the development of advanced energy storage solutions.

Joining the BESS Consortium represents a significant commitment from these nations to achieving energy storage goals of 5 GW by the end of 2024, paving the way for a 400 GW renewable energy target by 2030. Burkina Faso, Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Mauritania, Mozambique, Nigeria, and Togo have formally expressed their interest in joining the consortium, eager to harness its resources and expertise to accelerate their energy transition journeys.

To support these ambitious endeavors, the BESS Consortium has enlisted the backing of a formidable alliance of resource partners, including the African Development Bank, the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank, the Agence Française de Développement (AFD), Africa50, and Masdar. These partners will play a pivotal role in preparing projects, enhancing the regulatory environment, and unlocking private and public investment.

Welcoming the initiative, Malawi’s President Dr. Lazarus Chakwera emphasized the nation’s unwavering commitment to renewable energy as a cornerstone of its sustainable future. “Projects like the BESS Consortium are crucial in making our low-carbon pathway a reality,” he asserted.

Similarly, Mauritania’s Minister of Petroleum, Mines, and Energy, Nany Ould Chrougha, acknowledged the criticality of battery storage for his country, which already relies heavily on renewable energy sources. With plans to further increase its dependence on solar and wind power, Mauritania recognizes the BESS Consortium’s potential to ensure a smooth and efficient energy transition.

Echoing these sentiments, African Development Bank President, Dr. Akinwumi Adesina, lauded the transformative potential of the BESS Consortium, highlighting its role in leveraging strategic partnerships and financial commitments to drive progress. “As we move forward, let us remain steadfast in our dedication to a cleaner, greener, and more prosperous Africa—one powered by the limitless potential of renewable energy and the resilience of the African spirit,” he declared.

Underscoring the synergies between the BESS Consortium and the Bank’s flagship Desert to Power initiative, Adesina expressed optimism about the collective impact of these endeavors.

Meanwhile, Dr. Rajiv J. Shah, President of the Rockefeller Foundation and Co-chair of the Global Leadership Council, emphasized the urgency of addressing energy storage challenges to enable countries to fully embrace renewable energy. “The BESS Consortium exemplifies the bold actions required to break down barriers and empower communities to join the climate transformation underway,” he stated.

Expanding its reach beyond Africa, the BESS Consortium has also welcomed Barbados, Belize, and India as members.

Barbados’ Prime Minister, Mia Mottley, affirmed the nation’s commitment to climate action and its support for the BESS Consortium’s efforts to improve access to battery energy storage systems, particularly in developing countries.

The Global Leadership Council, a high-level coalition of global leaders convened by the Global Energy Alliance for People and Planet, serves as the driving force behind the BESS Consortium. Its membership comprises leaders of multilateral development banks, development finance institutions, international agencies, NGOs, corporate executives, and government representatives.

With this diverse and influential coalition at its helm, the BESS Consortium is poised to revolutionize Africa’s energy landscape, paving the way for a sustainable, resilient, and prosperous future powered by renewable ener

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