Future low-carbon electricity in Africa: how much material is needed?
African countries are expected to experience some of the worst climate effects, while trying to provide higher electricity access and increase wellbeing.
Concrete, steel, and aluminium present the largest opportunities for action, given their high mass or embodied emissions projections.
Embodied emissions related to material use for electricity plants are evaluated in three scenarios: a reference scenario, and two scenarios related to the Paris Agreement (where renewable energy increases), resulting in higher embodied emissions as renewables are integrated.
Pursuing strategies to increase the use of renewables should be done alongside these material efficiency strategies to reach the total low-carbon potential.
Photo credit: Luca Bravo