Just Green AFRIH2ICA Stakeholder event – Promoting a JUST transition to Green Hydrogen

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From 14th February to 15th February, the UNESCO Chair at Strathmore University, in partnership with Clean Energy Partnership and the European Union, hosted a stakeholder event for the Just Green AfriH2ica project. With a focus on promoting a just transition to green hydrogen in Africa, the assembly brought together key stakeholders from Kenya, Africa, and Europe to align clean energy policies and strategies, develop joint green hydrogen roadmaps, and foster international partnerships.

Just Green AfrH2ica is an EU-funded project whose main objective is to support a JUST TRANSITION approach for hydrogen, making green hydrogen a real enabler of AU-EU cooperation. Africa is blessed with abundant renewable energy resources, particularly in wind and solar energy, making it a competitive global supplier of green hydrogen. The transition to green hydrogen offers immense potential for reducing energy production costs and driving sustainable economic development across the continent. Scaling up renewable hydrogen production in Africa could lead to a potential 50% cost reduction between 2025 and 2050, supported by reducing energy costs and expanding electrolyzer supply chains.

“Just Green Africa is a stakeholder-driven project. The inputs of our stakeholders have been relevant since we started this project,” said Prof. Stefano Barberis, the Project Coordinator, Just Green AfrH2ica. “The transition we envision is to be just and right; keeping in mind our people and our planet,” he added.

The approach of the Just Green AfrH2ica project involves a comprehensive analysis of potential scenarios for green hydrogen development within the collaboration framework of the European Union (EU) and the African Union (AU). It aims to promote synergy and mutual benefit collaboration, leveraging the strengths of both regions towards advancing hydrogen economies. By bringing together stakeholders from various sectors, the project fosters cooperation and knowledge-sharing to accelerate progress in establishing sustainable hydrogen solutions across Africa. Through this approach, the project seeks to contribute to the continent’s energy security and sustainable development goals.

During the event, Prof. Da Silva emphasized the importance of collaboration, stating, “I find it a clear path when we work together. To achieve this, it is important that both EU and AU hydrogen policies and development roadmaps are conceived in a cross-fertilizing way. This workshop has brought together Africa and Europe for a dialogue to understand the space of collaboration and development for mutual benefit.” Kenya is currently one of the AU frontrunners in renewable energy production. Thanks to its port infrastructure and strategic position, it can become one of the most relevant African Hydrogen Hubs.

The government was also well represented in the discussions. Ms. Edna Mutevu, from the Ministry of Energy and Petroleum in Kenya, emphasized, “Collaboration is key. We already have a roadmap and strategy of what is needed. This includes knowledge sharing and capacity building, making sure that Kenyans know where we are going and how we will get there. Every Kenyan should have in the least an idea of  our vision regarding green hydrogen.” Ms. Mirela Atanisiu, Executive Director and interim of the Clean Hydrogen Partnership, expressed her excitement about the discussions, “I am excited about the discussions, but what I can’t wait to see are our next steps after this discussion and after the two-year project.”

This project aims to drive future investment and policy alignment between EU-AU and catalyze the growth of independent and collaborative hydrogen economies. The objectives are to develop a sustainable joint green hydrogen transition roadmap and support a JUST TRANSITION approach for hydrogen, making green hydrogen a real enabler of AU-EU cooperation.

 

The Just Green AFRIH2ICA Stakeholder Event stands as a testament to Africa’s commitment to sustainable innovation. With passion, collaboration, and a shared vision for a greener future, attendees leave inspired and empowered to make a meaningful difference in the world.

 

Article Written by: Christine Mwangi

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