U. S. climate envoy John Kerry warned African nations last week not to rely too heavily on natural gas in their efforts to modernize and bring electricity to millions.
Speaking on the sidelines of an African environment ministers’ conference in Dakar, Senegal, Kerry told Reuters gas can be used in the short term to transition to cleaner energy sources.
“We are not saying no gas,” Kerry said. “What we are saying is, over the next few years, gas replaces coal or replaces oil.”
His comments tapped into a fundamental problem for Senegal and other energy impoverished nations in Africa. According to the International Energy Agency, more than 600 million people – nearly half of Africa’s population – lack electricity.
Many African nations say developing their oil and gas resources is critical to boosting electricity production, powering industries, and curbing energy poverty. Yet many developed nations, including the United States are curbing investments in fossil fuels to uphold hold their pledge to transition to cleaner energy by the end of the decade…. (Read more)