Ana PEGO, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Portugal
Climate change and the increasing use of water for economic activities are leading to greater pressures on water use for renewable energy production, energy vectors such as electricity, heat and fuels. African countries urgently need specific models to estimate and assess the burden on the national water-energy nexus for their policy decisions and energy planning, as most current models are based on the standard and use of developed countries. Given this baseline, there is an urgent need to take up a new challenge in Africa to improve sustainability in both rural and urban areas. The project implemented by some African countries, namely Tunisia, Morocco, Egypt and Kenya, aims to pilot a zone where it is possible to achieve sustainable growth in some areas.
The pilot action of the project includes the development and testing of models for decision makers and planners to implement clean energy infrastructure and energy supply in Africa, ensuring a systemic approach to the water-energy-food nexus. The models will be primarily based on existing reliable source codes and models, international agreements and trade issues. Each test will be conducted using an African watershed as an example, with the participation of societal stakeholders. The pilot actions will promote the highest standards of transparency in model adoption, extending beyond documentation to aspects such as assumptions, architecture, open code and data.
Expected impacts include lowering the cost and improving the efficiency of renewable energy and renewable fuel technologies and their value chains, and better integration of renewable energy and renewable fuel-based solutions in the energy-consuming water and food sectors. The results will increase competition among African countries in energy and food supply and its impact in rural and urban areas.
Keywords: energy|African countries| pilot project|rural areas|urban areas