Q&A: Climate leaders with answers

Raphael George is a Technical Operations Lead in West Africa at Energicity, developing solar-powered mini-grids

Q: Which West African country is leading in adoption of green energy? A: I will say Nigeria. It is experimenting with new policies and technology. It’s due to review the 2005 Electricity Act which was last amended in 2023. The act has been a great boost. Before that the transition had been difficult.

Q: Who is investing? A: The private sector is leading in commercial and industrial solar energy access. The rate at which financial institutions and residential blocks are switching to solar energy is amazing. There is an energy supply gap of 40% that is motivating them. 

Q: That's all it took? A: People have changed their mindsets. They have no problem with solar anymore, even in rural areas. There are a lot of pilot projects across West Africa.  

Q: What about the public sector? A: Governments have been offering incentives for distribution of electricity. We can produce and sell energy to the grid from solar mini-grids. 

Q: What else? Nigeria set up a Rural Electrification Fund offering grants to finance solar mini-grids. Multiple governments are implementing proof of concept projects to create awareness.

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