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Sustainable Development

Facts and figures about Sustainable Development

In Sub-Saharan Africa, 2 out of every 3 people – more than 600 million people in total – currently do not have access to electricity. Improving electricity access is an essential component of enhancing human development, by means of, for example, enabling greater use of technologies for irrigation and water pumping, creating employment, enhancing the conditions for study, work and leisure, and for the provision of modern health services and better educational services.

The Sub-Saharan African electricity system is still in its infancy. The current production capacity can only meet around 35% of the projected electricity demand for 2030 and less than 15% of the projected demand for 2050. Nevertheless, Sub-Saharan Africa is richly endowed with both fossil and renewable energy sources, which can easily accommodate the projected electricity demand. Coal is abundant in southern Africa, and several countries in Sub-Saharan Africa have large natural gas reserves.

In the Shared Socioeconomic Pathways (SSP2), middle-of-the-road, scenario, 500 million people are projected to not have access to electricity in 2030, 90% of whom live in rural areas. The preferred electrification system for connecting those people depends highly on their level of electricity consumption.

In a circular economy, materials ideally retain their original quality. This enables us to recycle these recovered materials into the same type of products. Several circularity strategies exist to prevent resource extraction and primary material demand as well as waste production. There is also a priority order in those circularity strategies. As a rule of thumb, more circularity means more environmental gain.