JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, — In the midst of a global oil and gas crisis, Africa must take charge of its own energy destiny, and use its rich resource assets for the benefit of its own people.
Former Nigerian president Olusegun Obasanjo has said that African countries cannot be beholden to the unrealistic ideals of the Global North for an exclusively renewables-driven economy. He says this is particularly true when the developed world is itself accepting the need for hydrocarbons.
His comments come as the world scrambles to find new sources of oil and gas to meet its energy needs following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
“Like the rest of the world, Africa must follow energy policies that promote socio-economic development and sustainable hydrocarbon use,” he says.
“Africa is the lowest producer of greenhouse-gas emissions and needs to lift nearly half-a-billion citizens out of poverty,” says Obasanjo. “Responsible management of our hydrocarbons and investment in our economies is necessary to ensure a just energy transition and sustainable growth for our people.”
Africa is one of the potential new sources of energy to replace this supply, with an estimated 61 billion BOE (barrel oil equivalent) being discovered in the region over the past 10 years, Persecondnews.com gathered.
“There has been much talk at forums such as the World Economic Forum in Davos about a just energy transition,” says Obasanjo. “However, we must not allow Africa to be dictated to.
The African Petroleum Producers’ Organization (APPO) has also called on member countries and other global institutions to use petroleum as a catalyst for energy security, sustainable development and economic diversification in Africa through collaboration and partnerships.