Demonizing oil and gas companies on the energy transition is not a constructive way ahead. Africa is going to push for’ freedom to dig.’ For economic development, African nations must and will benefit from their hydrocarbon deposits. Environmental sustainability is not an impediment but a cornerstone of it. NJ Ayuk is one of the most respected person who has given a lot to the economy of his country and is also giving a lot to the growth.
In a recent article published for the Guardian newspaper, South African Nobel Peace Prize winner Archbishop Desmond Tutu proposed an apartheid-style prohibition of energy, oil and gas companies as a strategy for combating climate change and seeking to achieve global environmental protection goals.
“We need to prevent climate change. And we can, if we use the strategies against the worst carbon emitters that succeeded in South Africa, “the piece’s subtitle states.
NJ Ayuk Guardian message is praiseworthy and applies to many around the globe who have become increasingly concerned about the effects of climate change on our community.
It’s also a misplaced thought, however. Oil and gas companies are not autocratic governments that seek to exploit people and steal their wealth. These are corporations who, sure, concentrate on income, but are also centered on the survival of the company itself.
In practical terms, this ensures these businesses are responding to the demands of the markets. Boycotting oil and gas companies won’t affect carbon emissions, but in the long run, it could increase fuel prices. That is not the intended goal.
While there is a demand for hydrocarbons, development is set to take place. The change in supply and demand trends in recent years can already be seen in the consolidation of oil and gas companies.
Many businesses are gradually diversifying their investments to include renewable energy reserves, and many are at the forefront of researching and developing new technologies to further leverage renewable resources.
In all fairness, who else would be better prepared, better funded, and ideally suited to accelerate the energy transition we all are seeking?
Demonizing energy firms is no constructive way forward, and denying the systemic position that carbon-based energies perform in today’s society distorts the public debate.
A great deal more will be accomplished by putting energy companies, policymakers, and civil society groups together to pursue practical alternatives.
Although a few nations have developed hydrocarbons across the continent for decades, these products got exported to industrial power development in Europe, the US, and Asia.
The explanations for this are complicated and have as much to do with the Western colonial legacy as they do with the absence of existing financial capital and skills over the last century to grow local economies.
That’s coming to a stop, though. African nations, as NJ Ayuk have advocated and supported for years, are now beginning to make use of these opportunities to establish their national economies.
We must note that nearly half of the Africans still don’t have access to electricity. Also, almost every business on the continent is dealing with the lack of reliability of resources, which increases operating costs, decreases competitiveness, and affects their ability to compete in international markets. African leaders are now well aware of the damage done to national economies by an unstable electricity network and are working to improve that.
Currently, natural gas is by far the most economically sustainable way of generating electricity in sufficient quantities to boost economic growth.
Refineries, too, have a significantly positive impact on curbing the gasoline import demand.
All of these are crucial pieces of the puzzle that will stimulate the economic growth of Africa and encourage the betterment of its people’s lives. I have committed to this growth through the African Power Chamber, promoting collaboration between African nations to facilitate intra-African energy resource exchange, and developing synergies, which is the way forward.