The International Finance Corporation (IFC) has launched an initiative with the private sector to increase opportunities for women in the renewable energy sector in sub-Saharan Africa.
Under the four-year Energy2Equal programme, launched in partnership with the government of Canada, IFC will partner with the private sector to expand women’s access to jobs, leadership positions, and entrepreneurial opportunities in corporate value chains within the renewable energy space.
The renewable energy sector, which includes solar, wind, hydro and geothermal power generation, will play a critical role in meeting sub-Saharan’s Africa’s energy demand.
By 2040, renewable energy could provide more than 40% of all power generation capacity in the region, according to the International Energy Agency Africa Energy Outlook.
The Energy2Equal programme goal is to ensure both men and women benefit from the growing sector.
The IRENA also states that women represent just one third of the renewable energy workforce worldwide.
“Closing the renewable energy gender gap in Africa will create more opportunities for women and help companies foster business development, improve innovation and engage better with communities,” said Jumoke Jagun-Dokunmu, IFC regional director for Eastern Africa.
IFC will partner with up to 15 companies in the renewable energy sector. They will make measurable, time-bound commitments to reduce gender gaps in their businesses.
To help companies achieve these commitments, the programme will offer a peer-learning platform, advisory services to help companies implement gender smart solutions.
The programme will also offer networking opportunities to enhance women’s engagement in the renewable energy sector in sub-Saharan Africa.
Participating companies in the first peer-learning platform include Baobab+, Bujagali Energy Limited, Elle Solaire, ENGIE PowerCorner, Greenlight Planet, Inyenyeri, Lekela, PEG Africa and Schneider Electric.