Wind power is quickly gaining ground in Africa and many African countries are exploring this energy source to meet a fraction of their energy needs. Both onshore and offshore wind power is capable of delivering lower-cost power, as opposed to fossil fuels. A recent report commissioned by the International Finance Corporation (IFC), on ‘Wind Energy; Joining Forces for an African Lift-Off,’ indicated that Africa has 59,000 GW of technical onshore and offshore wind potential, which is enough to meet the continent’s energy demand 250 times over.
The Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) notes that Africa is only using 0.01 per cent, of the 59,000 GW. In late 2021, GWEC, with support from numerous entities such as International Energy Agency (IEA), the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), IEA, IFC; launched Africa Wind Power (AWP); a regional body representing the wind industry, with a goal to scale up and accelerate wind projects across the continent. Wind power markets in Africa include South Africa, Morocco, Egypt, Kenya and Ethiopia.
Africa boasts vast hydroelectric power (HEP) resources, with immense potential for increased power generation to power the continent. South Africa takes the lead, generating 45 per cent of the continent’s production, North African countries follow suit at 30 per cent, whilst the rest of the continent cumulatively take up 25 per cent. Cameroon, Guinea, DRC, Sudan, Mozambique and Angola, have noteworthy HEP resources, of which currently only 7 per cent are developed.