Photo credit: The Climate Club

Data-driven planning and strong public policy have emerged as topics of discussion at the COP27, which began on Sunday with the goal of unlocking the potential for clean energy in the Global South.

Bloomberg Philanthropies said it will work with Sustainable Energy for All and other partners in 25 countries to help countries develop an energy transition plan that will use robust data and analysis to chart a credible path to universal energy access by 2030 for a just and equitable net-zero future.

The work will focus on helping seed the governance, data, and local infrastructure needed to pave the way toward a clean energy future by partnering with national and local governments, bolstering local climate action and the clean energy workforce, and tracking progress.

Bloomberg Philanthropies announced the plans on Sunday in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, as world leaders gather for COP27.

Bloomberg Philanthropies stated that it will work with national and local governments to increase ambition, develop and leverage research, and facilitate community engagement to help overcome policy barriers for both early retirement of coal-fired plants in key countries and the acceleration of the implementation of just and equitable clean energy transition plans.

They will also collaborate with local organizations, small businesses, and universities to expand opportunities for skill training and technical development, as well as provide decision-makers with data on the clean energy transition to track progress and plan for future growth.

Bloomberg Philanthropies will work with local leaders to ensure that its work has a real impact on affected communities. Led by Michael R. Bloomberg, a global climate champion and Special Envoy to the UN Secretary-General on Climate Ambition and Solutions, it will address the climate crisis from every angle. Over $1.5 billion has been spent on climate and environmental issues to date.

Bloomberg Philanthropies has already brought mayors and other government and business leaders, grassroots partners, and environmental advocates together to accelerate the transition from coal to clean energy, improve air quality and public health, advance city and local climate action, protect and preserve ocean ecosystems, and unlock billions of dollars in sustainable finance.

Damilola Ogunbiyi, CEO and Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Sustainable Energy for All and Co-Chair of UN-Energy will work with Dr. Mahmoud Mohieldin, UN Climate Change High-Level Champion for Egypt and COP27, and GFANZ Africa Network Advisory Board Chair, to engage African Heads of State and local leaders throughout this process.

Ravi Menon, Chair of the GFANZ Asia Pacific Network Advisory Board, will collaborate closely with Dr. Mohieldin to promote knowledge sharing between emerging markets and developing countries in Africa and Asia.

Mary Schapiro, Vice Chair of GFANZ said, “Coal is the single largest source of global carbon emissions, and power generation from coal has rebounded to historically high levels, far off the path to net zero consistent with limiting global temperature increases to 1.5 degrees.”

According to Mary, GFANZ is committed to an economy-wide transition to net zero, which is supported by sectoral pathways and policies. The GFANZ regional networks in Africa, Asia, and, soon, Latin America will help ensure that private finance can play a role in rapidly scaling up transition finance in EMDEs and supporting the managed phaseout of high-emitting assets such as coal.

“Together with Bloomberg Philanthropies, GFANZ is working to support financial institutions striving to mobilize finance for clean energy projects and project preparation facilities,” he said.

Collaboration with GFANZ to raise capital for Clean Energy Development

Bloomberg Philanthropies is also collaborating with GFANZ as part of an expanded strategy to support capital mobilisation for emerging market and developing country energy transitions (EM&DCs).

To keep the planet on a net zero energy path by 2030, EM&DCs alone will require an additional $1 trillion in annual clean energy investment. Over 550 financial institutions from 50 countries have committed to net zero through one of the net-zero alliances that comprise GFANZ. However, private finance continues to flow infrequently to EM&DCs, owing in large part to a scarcity of investable energy transition projects.

Bloomberg Philanthropies, in collaboration with GFANZ, will also work with financial institutions to strengthen investment opportunities through project preparation, as well as raise standards for carbon credits and leverage them in support of coal phase-out.

GFANZ will strengthen Project Preparation Facilities (PPFs) focused on the energy transition through its Africa, Asia-Pacific, and soon-to-be-launched Latin America Networks. This is intended to address existing barriers to coal phase-out and clean energy development by involving private financial institutions earlier in the project preparation process and providing technical and financial assistance to assist projects in meeting the risk-return profiles of private finance.

Bloomberg Philanthropies and GFANZ will also collaborate with stakeholders across the carbon credit ecosystem, from project developers to credit buyers to registries and governance bodies, to ensure adequate infrastructure is in place to raise standards across voluntary carbon markets and scale activity to support EMDCs’ energy transitions.

Bloomberg Philanthropies and GFANZ will also help to develop high-quality carbon credits for avoided emissions from coal power plant retirements. These credits can provide a significant additional revenue stream, making coal phase-out more financially viable.

“Recognising that Developed Countries should take the lead, the Global South also plays a critical role in the transition to net zero and sustainable development,” said Mahmoud Mohieldin, Chair of the GFANZ Africa Network and High-level Climate Action Champion of Egypt.

According to Mahmoud Mohieldin, the world cannot go on as usual while developing countries, particularly Africa, bear the brunt of climate change’s growing and rapidly accelerating impacts.

He emphasised that Africa, in particular, has contributed the least to greenhouse gas emissions while facing some of the greatest risks and that providing clean energy alternatives is an important driver of much-needed progress across the continent.

“Africa has the potential to be a global clean energy leader if given the proper financial support and resources,” said Saliem Fakir, Executive Director of the African Climate Foundation.

Saliem applauded Michael Bloomberg and Bloomberg Philanthropies for recognizing the importance of genuine economic partnerships in Africa to support the continent’s clean energy future.

“This commitment will not only help Africa build more resilient and diverse economies but also demonstrate to other funders and financial institutions that investing in Africa is prudent and profitable. Africa, with the right support, can shift away from the dependency on fossil fuels and link a clean energy transition to new forms of modernization and industrial pathways.”

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DISCLAIMER: The Views, Comments, Opinions, Contributions and Statements made by Readers and Contributors on this platform do not necessarily represent the views or policy of Multimedia Group Limited.