17 October 2013 – Between 2011 and 2012, the African Development Bank (AfDB) increased by 92% its investment in clean energy in Africa, according to a new report by Bloomberg New Energy Finance. The publication looks at the clean energy transactions of 26 national and multilateral development banks from 2007 to 2012.
The AfDB now ranks 11th out of 25 on a list of development investors that is topped by Germany’s Kfw Entwicklungsbank, China Development Bank and the Brazilian Development Bank. The AfDB’s investments have increased slowly but steadily from 2007 until 2012, when they expanded exponentially. Total AfDB investment in 2011 was only US$769 million, as compared to US$1.475 billion in 2012. In total, the AfDB has dedicated US$4.3 billion to clean energy since 2007.
As documented in the report, the AfDB has been, by far, the largest source of financing for the Africa region providing US$4.3 billion of the total US$14.7 billion invested by development banks in the region for clean energy projects since 2007. The World Bank Group was in second place with US$2.9 billion.
In 2012, clean energy financing from development banks broke the US$100 billion mark for the first time in history. The AfDB has been keeping pace with this investment trend, specifically, but also in general in terms of its work on the environment. In May 2010, the AfDB created its energy, environment and climate change department to bring these three interlinked disciplines under one operational unit to deliver tangible results for the Bank’s regional member countries. In particular, the department manages climate finance instruments for the Climate Investments Funds (CIF), the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and the Sustainable Energy Fund for Africa (SEFA). The significant additional resources brought by these funds totalling US$1.2 billion since 2010 allows the bank to support innovative operations such as the Moroccan integrated solar and wind energy programmes or the geothermal development project in Kenya which would otherwise be too costly and risky to materialise in the short term.
In general, clean energy has enjoyed a big boost from development banks in recent years. Investments worldwide increased three-fold between 2007 to 2012 from US$36.8 billion to US$108.9 billion.