While Africa faces the impacts of climate change, the rate of energy poverty across the continent has increased by 25 million people in 2022 compared to pre-COVID-19 levels
This increase, coupled with the continent’s growing population, has emphasised the role Africa’s hydrocarbons will play in alleviating energy poverty and driving socioeconomic growth. To ensure the development of the continent’s hydrocarbon resources align with global climate policies, the adoption of technologies such as carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS) within the hydrocarbons sector could be a game changer.
Through CCUS, Africa has the opportunity to attract the investments needed to enhance oil and gas production and exploitation while ensuring development is achieved in a sustainable manner. With investments of up to US$25bn now required across the continent’s entire energy sector per annum to achieve universal energy access by 2030, CCUS application across the oil and gas industry will be critical for securing capital and prioritising environmental sustainability. Such technologies will be instrumental in ensuring the continent’s 125.3bn barrels of crude oil and 620 trillion cubic feet of gas reserves are both exploited and maximised to meet domestic energy needs, particularly across heavy industries and power generation while also creating jobs across the energy sector and various industries.
With Europe increasingly looking to Africa to meet its energy demands, CCUS application across Africa’s oil and gas sector will help improve the continent’s gas monetisation and revenues for governments. Despite CCUS momentum gradually increasing in Africa owing to strengthened policy support, net zero commitments, digitalisation across the energy sector and the emergence of strategic business partnerships, up until now, adoption has been limited to a few countries including South Africa, Nigeria and Algeria. In this regard, more needs to be done from a regulatory perspective to accelerate adoption across the entire continent.
The African Energy Chamber (AEC), as the voice of the African energy sector, is calling for improved collaboration between academia and private and public sector institutions to accelerate research, development and technology adoption in African hydrocarbon producing countries. The AEC is strongly advocating for African governments to introduce financial incentives and policies that encourage CCUS adoption for oil and gas optimisation and decarbonisation.
With Africa currently developing large-scale gas projects such as the Eni’s Coral-Sul Floating Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) facility and TotalEnergies’ LNG project in Mozambique; the Graff and Venus discoveries in Namibia; the Brulpadda and Luiperd finds in South Africa; and the Greater Tortue Ahmeyim LNG development in Senegal and Mauritania, it is critical to integrate CCUS technology to optimise production and environmental impact.
African Energy Week (AEW 2022), Africa’s leading investment platform for the oil and gas sector, which takes place from 18 to 21 October 2022 in Cape Town, will feature panel discussions, ministerial forums and various summits to discuss the role of digitalisation across Africa’s oil and gas sector. AEW 2022 represents an ideal platform to discuss, negotiate and sign energy projects and technology partnerships and deployment deals.