Mnangagwa pushes for renewable energy adoption

By Agencies

PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa has pushed for the adoption of a broad based renewable energy usage in theface of rising climate change challenges.

In a speech read on his behalf by Vice-President Constantino Chiwenga at the just-ended fifth edition of the International Renewable Energy Conference and Expo in Victoria Falls, Mnangagwa said challenges posed by climate change demanded decisive action by governments.

“Zimbabwe, being one of the founding members of the Accelerated Partnership for Renewables in Africa, is collaborating and partnering with other African countries in the implementation of sustainable energy programmes and projects,” he said.

“This is set to double our national energy- mix, while contributing to regional energy security and investment opportunities that leaves no one and no place behind.

“The multi-pronged challenges of climate change coupled with the urgent need to industrialise our country demand you to be bold and decisive in the type of interventions and investments you make to close the energy gap.”

At the well-attended conference, renewable energy around electric vehicles, solar, wind and hydrogen were discussed as possible ways the country could move towards green energy.

Mnangagwa said it was important that the country was not left behind as the rest of the world was moving to adopt greener energy.
“Conferences such as this and other platforms should critically examine the ongoing transition by incorporating the associated technological and socioeconomic dimensions,” he said.

“Aspects related to the human capital development needs, in terms of skills and competencies that must be nurtured, should be given due attention.

“As we march towards realising energy self-sufficiency, the second republic is increasing the share of renewables as we migrate from non-renewable sources.

“Going into the future, we shall continue to prioritise the maintenance and rehabilitation of existing energy infrastructure over and above new green-field energy projects.”

Mnangagwa said the upgrading of the country’s energy generation, transmission and distribution networks as well as other infrastructure was also being scaled up.

“In view of the critical relationship between energy, and sustainable socio-economic development, I call upon the sector and in particular, the Ministry of Energy and Power Development, to enhance energy conservation and efficiency awareness,” he added.

“In addition, the provision of sound technical and professional services to investors and all stakeholders in the sector, must be guided by the ease of doing business work ethic advanced by my administration.

“As ministries, departments and agencies in the energy sector, you are challenged to facilitate and not to frustrate partners and investors.”

He urged the energy sector to shift the discourse so that the country charted greener development pathways that did not compromise environmental biodiversity and the country’s pressing need to modernise and industrialise Africa.

“On its part, my government will continue to fine-tune policies and heighten the implementation of flagship projects to manage the uncertainties associated with climate change,” Mnangagwa added.

“The adage goes; ‘Alone one can go fast; but together, we can go far’, hence, our unity of purpose and determination to build greater climate change resilience in the energy sector should result in increased collaboration among stakeholders and investors.

“Let us work concertedly to achieve net zero targets as outlined in the Nationally Determined Contributions.”

Zimbabwe experiences a power deficit of 500 megawatts (MW) to as much as 1 000MW owing to mostly climate change.

The renewable energy conference is organised by The Standard in collaboration with the Power and Energy Development ministry.

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