EU keen on partnering with Zimbabwe on renewable energy

THE European Union has pledged to support Zimbabwe in harnessing renewable energy, in a bid to assist the country meet Sustainable Development Goals and achieve a middle-income economy by 2030 as envisioned by the Second Republic.

The EU, through its ambassador to Zimbabwe Jobst von Kirchmann, said it will also support the country in developing sustainable environments and resilient food and water systems.

The ambassador said opportunities to build adaptive, absorptive and transformative strategies such as harnessing renewable and green energy will be pursued.

“The goal is circularity, that is towards a circular economy through resource efficiency, circular production and waste management as well as access to green finance. Zimbabwe’s economic growth is anchored on agriculture and other natural resource-based sectors. We hope to partner the country in various green projects such as harnessing the sun, wind and biogas projects,” said ambassador Kirchmann.

He said the UN will also support the development of a climate smart and resilient agricultural sector at a scale that can cope with an increase in population and climatic variables.

Ambassador Kirchmann said Zimbabwe can achieve all its goals through the creation of an enabling policy environment complemented by the implementation of innovative productivity enhancing investment initiatives.

“Some of these include off farm production systems that recognise the need to make efficient management and use of land, water and other green energy resources, while also ensuring the protection and promotion of biodiversity,” said Ambassador Kirchmann.

He said proposed partnerships will target achieving economic growth by furthering ongoing resilience building work that contributes to increased community capacitation through the inclusion of all Zimbabweans.

“Access to clean energy is key to stimulating sustainable socio-economic development and the reduction of carbon emissions.

The UN will, therefore, catalyse investments in climate and renewable energy projects for achievement of the SDGs,” said Ambassador Kirchmann.

He said as economic activity rebounds, greenhouse gas emissions are likely to increase.

“The Covid-19 recovery phase presents a profound opportunity for Zimbabwe to steer development on a path that tackles climate change, protects the environment, reverses biodiversity loss, and ensures long term health and security of its people,” said Kirchmann.

He said focus will also be on enabling access of vulnerable populations to clean and sustainable energy sources, and the transition to a low carbon economy and circular economy.

“This will include diversifying the mix of renewable energy sources through mobilization of innovative financing mechanisms from the private sector and development partners to complement public efforts,” he said.

Government introduced energy policies that effectively set the tone for the development and sustainable exploitation of renewable energy.

The main objectives of the policies are to forge stronger relationships, partner renewable energy companies as well as to present the roadmap for strategies. – Chronicle

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