African Rift Geothermal Conference emphasizes increasing women participation
“the African Union recognizes the need for regional cooperation, the private sector participation, and international institutions to invest in order to accelerate the development of geothermal resources in the region."Devdiscourse News Desk | Nairobi | Updated: 09-11-2020 14:46 IST | Created: 09-11-2020 12:10 IST
Speaking at the conference, the African Union Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy, Amani Abou-Zeid, emphasized the need for home-grown experts by improving regional institutions. She said, "the African Union recognizes the need for regional cooperation, the private sector participation, and international institutions to invest in order to accelerate the development of geothermal resources in the region."
She focused on the skill development and capacity building of these home-grown experts and also putting forth the need for the role of women in the geothermal industry. She noted that there is "the need for women to be visible and mainstreamed throughout the geothermal value chain."
"Currently, more than 600 million Africans lack access to electricity, with many still relying on traditional biomass for cooking. This is having huge impacts on our efforts towards poverty reduction and human development in the continent," Zeid added.
In the meantime, Olafur Grimson, the former President of Iceland, launched the African Women Advancing Geothermal (AWAG) group during ARGeo, to support and enhance women's representation in the industry. Lauding the effort, Grimson said, that the initiative will bring gender equality and new ideas to the geothermal industry.
The virtual conference was held in Nairobi, Kenya. It welcomed more than 500 local, regional and international geothermal experts, policymakers, financiers ad developers from all over the world. At the event, more than 500 experts from different niche across Africa and all over the world agreed on the need to accelerate geothermal development in Africa.