Employees of the solar power plant in Ouarzazate, currently the largest solar power plant in the world

Cooperation with countries in Africa Securing energy supply

Without a demand-oriented energy supply, there can be no development. SDG 7, the “energy goal” of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, reflects this circumstance, underlining that almost all the other sustainability goals depend on a sustainable energy supply.

Experts believe that, by 2040, demand for energy in Africa will be 80 per cent higher than it is now. That is why the BMZ is supporting its partner countries in their efforts to expand the use of renewable energies, so that energy supply systems will remain sustainable in the future. In Morocco, for example, one of the world's biggest and most modern solar thermal power plants is being built, with assistance from Germany.

Germany is providing support to its partner countries to help them completely restructure their energy sectors. The idea behind this restructuring is that, in future, energy of sufficient quality and quantity must be available in the right place at the right time and at the right price - in other words, the aim is to provide “energy in line with needs”.

At the same time, efforts to expand the use of renewable energy sources, in particular in the form of decentralised power supply systems, are being encouraged. A further goal is to improve energy efficiency.

The restructuring of the energy sector is taking place at three levels:

  1. Basic power supply
    In future, the basic supply to meet the energy needs of households and micro enterprises in rural areas is to be secured, for example, by means of stand-alone systems such as rooftop solar kits and solar lamps.
  2. Energy needs going beyond the basic level
    For rural communities, social institutions and small and medium-sized enterprises, energy needs above the basic level are to be secured by means of mini and micro networks.
  3. Energy supply for large-scale users and consumers
    For towns and cities and for industry or mining, energy needs are to be secured by means of grid-based renewable energy and grid densification.

“Green people's energy for Africa”

Solar installation on a house roof in Accra, Ghana

Solar installation on a house roof in Accra, Ghana

Solar installation on a house roof in Accra, Ghana

A key initiative towards realising the Marshall Plan with Africa that the BMZ is pursuing is a programme called “Green people's energy for Africa”. The programme is designed to support the construction of decentralised, needs-based systems that will provide energy from renewable energy sources in rural areas of Africa. The focus of the programme is on involving local municipalities, cooperatives and businesses; fostering local value chains and the efficient use of energy, in particular in the agricultural sector; and creating employment opportunities.

A feature of the programme are “people's energy partnerships” between municipal players from Africa and Germany, as well as basic and advanced training for technicians in the energy sector.

Under the programme, some 500 or more small and medium-sized enterprises, at least half of them from the agricultural sector, will be supplied as needed with energy from renewable sources, and 500 local and municipal players will receive support for developing business plans and concrete projects.