USAID-funded COE Energy's stakeholders meeting tackles Egypt's energy challenges

Ahmed Kotb , Tuesday 28 May 2024

The USAID-funded Centre of Excellence for Energy (COE Energy) Egypt, led by Arizona State University, held its Stakeholder’s conference this week to address Egypt's energy transition, identifying challenges, seizing opportunities, and charting a roadmap toward energy security.

USAID-funded COE

 

The conference brought together industry leaders, government officials, and energy researchers.

"It is vital to bring together higher education faculty, energy industry stakeholders, and governmental agencies to discuss Egypt’s energy challenges and how to address them to advance the energy transition," said Sayfe Kiaei, project director of COE Energy.

Kiaei noted that one of the centre's roles is to facilitate conversations like this one and provide guidance to developing higher education capacity and a skilled energy workforce.

Speaking at the conference, Mohamed El-Araby, chief technology officer at El-Araby Group, stressed that the knowledge industry is very important to Egypt's energy transition and the economy as a whole.

Focusing on technology transfer at his company, he added, has allowed it to reduce its carbon footprint, grow energy-efficient products at a faster rate, and generate many job opportunities.

El-Araby also stated that research and development is now a survival tool for the industry and that the gap between the industry and academic research can be filled through collaboration to meet market needs while making use of the fast-paced technological advancements and the development of artificial intelligence to reach the country's sustainable development goals.

Hesham El-Gamal, head of the Benban Solar Investors Association, pointed out during the conference that Egypt has made a major leap and generated investments in the field of new and renewable energy, whether solar, hydro, or wind.

He added that Egypt is developing a strategy to achieve sustainability and energy integration, aiming to reach 42 percent of the total capacity of the national electricity network by 2035.

He pointed specifically to the Benban megaproject in Aswan, which is the third largest project of its kind in the world, with total electrical energy produced corresponding to about 1,465 megawatts, and with investments exceeding $2.2 billion.

"We need technical and financial support to apply new technologies and reach our targets of reducing emissions from the industry," said Ahmed Abdrabo, energy and environment consultant at Egypt's Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources.

He added that a cumulative $150 trillion is required to prevent the planet from warming over 1.5°C by the year 2050, through climate change adaptation and mitigation measures carried out by all countries, which mainly include increasing renewable energy production, reducing carbon emissions, increasing biomass production and increasing production of hydrogen.

"We need to direct more funds to support developing countries for their energy transition goals," he stressed.

 

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