Category: Sub-Saharan Africa

Why banning financing for fossil fuel projects in Africa isn’t a climate solution 10/14/2021

Why banning financing for fossil fuel projects in Africa isn’t a climate solution

Payne Institute Fellow Benjamin Attia and Director Morgan Bazilian write about how globally, the top 10% of countries consume 20 times more energy than the bottom 10%. And 1.1 billion sub-Saharan Africans share the same amount of power generation capacity as Germany’s 83 million people. At least half have no access to electricity at all.  These stark energy inequalities are fueling thorny debates around financing Africa’s energy future as world leaders and their negotiators prepare for COP26.  October 14, 2021.

Phytoremediation and phytoextraction in Sub-Saharan Africa Addressing economic and social challenges 10/6/2021

Phytoremediation and phytoextraction in Sub-Saharan Africa: Addressing economic and social challenges

Payne Institute Program Manager Jordy Lee, Faculty Fellow Rennie B. Kaunda, Thomson Sinkala, Payne Scholar Caleb F. Workman, Director Morgan D. Bazilian, and Deputy Director Greg Clough write about how mining and mineral processing continues to be a source of lasting environmental problems in many developing economies. Phytoremediation has proven to be a viable strategy to remediate contaminated lands and limit environmental damage, but it has not been widely implemented partially due to social and economic challenges.  This paper provides a conceptual approach for phytoremediation-based mineral recovery and explores the social and economic challenges related to large-scale deployment.   October 6, 2021.  

The Kenyan Connection: Shedding Light on a Global Hub in the Trade of Illicit Gold and Mercury 9/13/2021

The Kenyan Connection: Shedding Light on a Global Hub in the Trade of Illicit Gold and Mercury

Payne Institute Deputy Director Greg Clough is part of the team of Colorado School of Mines researchers working on the IMPACT project that is transforming natural resource management to empower the artisanal gold mining communities in Nairobi.  IMPACT is exploring ways to disrupt the illicit gold supply chain networks.  September 13, 2021. 

Comparative analysis of selected African natural gas markets and related policies 6/7/2021

Comparative analysis of selected African natural gas markets and related policies

John Ayaburi, Shashwat Sharma, and Payne Institute Director Morgan Bazilian write about how natural gas discoveries in emerging economies have changed the global gas map dramatically over the last 15 years.  Understanding these policy dynamics is not only critical to effective resource utilization but also critical as the world commits to ending energy poverty.  June 7, 2021.

Why a trickle-down approach to vaccine access is not a viable strategy 2/25/2021

Why a trickle-down approach to vaccine access is not a viable strategy

Payne Institute Advisory Board member Mimi Alemayehou writes about how it’s probably understandable that many people missed the news earlier this month that the AU had secured 300-million doses of Covid-19 vaccine.  That’s a reflection of much of the way in which the pandemic in Africa has been covered. While the pages of the world’s press has been gripped by the way in which the world’s richest and most powerful countries have grappled their way through the pandemic, the continent with some of the world’s poorest countries has largely been left to face the crisis alone. February 25, 2021.

Understanding and Disrupting Key Convergence Nodes of the Illicit Gold and Mercury Supply Chains in Latin America and Africa 2/18/2021

Understanding and Disrupting Key Convergence Nodes of the Illicit Gold and Mercury Supply Chains in Latin America and Africa

Payne Institute Faculty Fellows Nicole Smith, Sebnem Duzgun, Strategy and Operations Manager Greg Clough, William Soud, and Katy Seguin have received an NSF award for their research on “Disrupting Operations of Illicit Supply Networks (D-ISN)” that will enhance national health, prosperity and welfare by contributing to a better understanding of illicit supply chains and the ability to detect, disrupt, and disable them. The project involves an examination and comparison of key convergence nodes in the global supply chains for illicit gold and mercury in Latin America and Africa. It specifically focuses on Peru and Kenya because of the similar characteristics they share on their respective continents as important trading hubs to other regional markets via both air and maritime transport, as well as acting as trading hubs for other illicit commodities and goods.  February 18, 2021.

Satellite Imagery Used for Electricity Consumption Forecasting in Africa For the First Time in New Service 11/24/2020

Satellite Imagery Used for Electricity Consumption Forecasting in Africa For the First Time in New Service

The Payne Institute is a proud partner with the Rockefeller Foundation in providing satellite imagery from our Earth Observation Group for the Electricity Consumption Prediction service for Africa that has been launched today by the e-GUIDE Initiative. The service, which will be freely available, provides estimates of future electricity consumption at high spatial resolution, and combines satellite imagery with historic and big data sources. The service improves the planning and provision of electricity towards ending energy poverty, helping to direct investments and scale projects that support the economic recovery of communities devastated by the Covid-19 pandemic. The e-GUIDE Initiative is a collaboration between The Rockefeller Foundation, UMass Amherst, Columbia University, Carnegie Mellon University, the Rochester Institute of Technology, and Colorado School of Mines.  November 24, 2020.  

Local-content rules for renewables projects don’t always work 11/16/2020

Local-content rules for renewables projects don’t always work

Payne Institute Director Morgan Bazilian, Victoria Cuming, and Thomas Kenyon write about some countries with large renewables markets have sought to create domestic supply chains and jobs by implementing local-content requirements. The focus is on three key renewables markets with local-content requirements – Brazil, India and South Africa – and analyze whether these rules have helped create local manufacturing capacity or benefited local companies.  November 16, 2020.

Measuring “Reasonably Reliable” access to electricity services 8/19/2020

Measuring “Reasonably Reliable” access to electricity services

Payne Fellow Todd Moss, Morgan Bazilian, John Ayaburi, and Jacob Kincer write that while the electricity access rate is regularly measured in most countries, there are no routinely tracked metrics that measure reliability. This paper presents a new approach that: (1) aggregates all available country data on reliability; (2) defines a minimum threshold metric for ‘reasonable reliability’; and (3) estimates the number of people without ‘reasonably reliable’ electricity services. We estimate the number of people without access to reliable electricity is approximately 3.5 billion. This new metric provides a more granular view of the enormous energy access gap globally, and insights for future investment and policy decisions.  August 19, 2020.

Global Gas Flaring Jumps to Levels Last Seen in 2009

GLOBAL GAS FLARING JUMPS TO LEVELS LAST SEEN IN 2009

The Payne Institute Earth Observation Group’s research on gas flaring is providing the data for the annual World Bank Global Gas Flaring Report.  Estimates from satellite data show global gas flaring increased, by 3%, to levels not seen in more than a decade, to 150 billion cubic meters (bcm), equivalent to the total annual gas consumption of Sub-Saharan Africa.  July 21, 2020.