How can energy policy measures for realizing the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 7 (Affordable and Clean Energy) and 13 (Climate Changes and Its Impact) in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) be framed toward achieving energy justice?
This position is quite challenging for developing countries that seek to resolve the rising inequality of access to modern and affordable energy systems as stipulated in SDG 7, whilst simultaneously working to meet their international obligations towards the attainment of SDG 13.
Both goals highlight interdependent and conflicting interactions that policymakers should be aware of whilst working to realize them.
Godswill Agbaitoro, Lecturer in Law at the University of Essex, and Kester Oyibo, an Associate at Punuka Attorneys & Solicitors in Lagos (Nigeria), aim to resolve this conflict by proposing some viable measures for a synergy between SDGs 7 and 13.
Their article in The Journal of World Energy Law & Business examines the paradoxical situation faced by countries in the SSA region and argues for a contextualization of the two goals within the energy justice framework.
The proposed approach entails a systematic transition from fossil fuels to low-carbon through socio-economic policies that take into account social injustices and further incorporate sustainable actions such as developing renewable energy technologies, diversification of energy options, energy efficiency, and regional alignments and/or cooperation.
The measures outlined in their article aim to help the SSA region achieve energy justice by 2030.