Pretoria, October 1st - 2nd, 2019
The International Energy Agency recently published its African Energy Outlook 2019, exploring the latest trends of the continent’s future energy landscape in a context of rising population, urbanization and industrialization.
The IEA report highlights how the number of people living in Africa’s cities is expected to expand by 600 million over the next two decades, and how such growth will drive the continent’s economic and infrastructure development and, in turn, energy demand. With one in every two Africans projected to be living in cities by 2050, safe, reliable and affordable urban transportation becomes a priority. In order to connect people to jobs, education and health services, Africa needs to study and implement mobility alternatives able to limit congestion, carbon emissions and air pollution.
Enel Foundation contributed to the discussion about these challenges and the opportunities for electric mobility in Africa, as Global Knowledge Partner of the Smarter Mobility Africa Forum which took place in Pretoria last October. Organized by Generation.e and in partnership with the Department of Transport and Gauteng Provincial Government, the event aimed to help to lay the foundations for a smarter and better-connected low-carbon mobility future in Africa.
Enel Foundation Deputy Director João Duarte delivered a keynote speech on a session dedicated to “Skills Development for Mobility 4.0” addressing the current gaps in education in Africa and highlighting international cooperation as a crucial tool. The responsible, who also spoke at the closing plenary presenting some of the figures from Enel Foundation recent researches, commented, “We are delighted to present Open Africa Power, our flagship training program for African clean energy leaders, at this forum discussing such an important topic for the continent. During this decade, African metropolis will become some of the biggest megacities in the whole world, and the solutions for sustainable and smarter mobility need to be addressed alongside the solutions for electrification and renewable electricity generation”.
Among the topics discussed, there was the need for integrated and large-scale deployment of clean mass transit for cities; the future of the automotive industry; infrastructures required for smarter mobility; and measures to reduce air pollution and climate change due to the transport sector, amongst many others.
More than a thousand participants, representing 16 different countries, attended the event and listened to more than 100 speakers. On the exhibition floor, more than 40 organizations presented new products or solutions, addressing the latest EV and smart mobility innovations, and underpinning that Africa too is getting ready to more sustainable mobility.
The Smarter Mobility Forum is part of a series of events organized by Generation.e and supported by Enel Foundation. Alongside the conferences, Generation.e proposes stakeholders to experience electric mobility with road trips such as EVRT Africa 2019, a road trip adventure from Pretoria to Cape Town to display the performance of EVs already available in the African market as well as to raise awareness for the need to promote infrastructure and stimulate early adoption.