Representing the board of YVE Zambia, Mr. Muyunda Akufuna launched the Sustainable Energy Debate Award with an address on the issue of climate change. He distinguished Zambia as a developing country that is vulnerable to the effects of climate change, emanating in part from the lack of adequate technological innovations that are necessary to adapt and mitigate the threats posed by the climate crisis. The Southern African state has undertaken a number of appropriate countervailing measures as espoused by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), such as the recent signing and ratification of the Paris Agreement.
Mr Akufuna explained that energy poverty negatively affect many people in developing countries in the form of low access to energy, use of dirty or polluting fuels and excessive time spent collecting fuel to meet basic needs. Many household don’t have access or cannot afford to have the basic energy for day to day need such as are lighting, cooking, domestic heating or cooling. Most rural areas in developing countries rely heavily on traditional biomass such as fuelwood, charcoal, crop residual, and pellets for cooking as well as kerosene lamps and candle lights for lighting.
Yet there are reliable sources of clean and renewable energy such as solar, wind, geothermal and biofuels coupled with innovations such as clean cook stoves and various solar products promoted around the world to help meet the basic needs of energy of human race without causing harm on our environment. Southern Africa, particularly Zambia, has an excellent solar potential, making this free and readily available source of energy a very viable venture in this part of Africa.