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Infrastructure blog

IPW: a look at the climate resilience gap, and funding for renewable energy in Africa

26 April 2024

In this week’s Infrastructure Policy Watch, a new report examines infrastructure resilience, and the World Bank funds electricity across Africa.

IPW: a look at the climate resilience gap, and funding for renewable energy in Africa
Infrastructure is key to reducing inequality. Image credit: Shutterstock

Closing the climate resilience infrastructure gap

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has released a report outlining how to close the climate resilience gap in infrastructure.

Infrastructure for a Climate Resilient Future discusses how international governments can invest more in resilience to lessen the impact of natural disasters on infrastructure and its operations.

The report identifies data, collaboration and technologies as drivers of resilience, and highlights financial resources, technical skills and regulatory frameworks as key enablers.

The OECD’s report also presents seven steps to improve infrastructure resilience, drawing from global best practice and in-depth analysis of projects in Colombia, Ghana, India, Indonesia, Japan, Mozambique and the United States.

Its recommendations include:

  • Systematically integrate climate change into infrastructure planning.
  • Make climate resilience a mainstream consideration when financing infrastructure.
  • Unlock the potential of nature-based solutions (NBS).
  • Address the unique challenges and opportunities faced by developing countries.
  • Integrate climate resilient approaches across all levels of government.

The ICE’s view

Prioritising resilience and adaptation will enable countries to develop stronger and more innovative infrastructure systems in the long term.

Improving resilience is a continuous process, where learning is key to creating evolving policies and standards for reducing the impacts of extreme weather.

The ICE’s policy position statement on climate resilience and adaptation outlines that investment in this area is essential to protect countries.

It can’t be seen as a ‘nice to have’ once key project outputs have been delivered.

Climate resilient and adaptable infrastructure provides enormous value – but, currently, it doesn’t have a measurable market value.

The ICE has recommended that the UK Treasury leads a full, national-scale economic review of resilience and adaptation to define this market value and incentivise investment.

NBS can also help improve infrastructure resilience.

NBS protect, sustainably manage and restore ecosystems to address societal challenges while benefiting communities and nature.

They are an important piece of the nature-positive infrastructure puzzle.

The World Bank partners with the African Development Bank Group on renewable energy

The World Bank Group and the African Development Bank Group have teamed up to provide at least 300 million people across Africa with access to electricity by 2030.

Currently, 600 million people across the continent don’t have electricity, which impacts access to healthcare, education, productivity, digital inclusivity, and ultimately, job creation.

The World Bank will need $30bn of public sector investment.

Future private sector investment opportunities will open up through connecting millions to distributed renewable energy systems (through stand-alone and off-grid systems, as well as mini-grids).

Ajay Banga, World Bank Group President, has highlighted that policy action from governments alongside investment will be needed to deliver this access to electricity successfully.

The ICE’s view

Infrastructure is key to reducing inequality and improving equity.

The partnership between the World Bank and African Development Bank Group is a key step to meet future needs and provide electricity access to millions across Africa.

As the ICE’s Financing Net Zero Next Steps programme highlighted, international governments need to have long-term plans in place that are linked to key national objectives and sustainable funding to speed up a just net zero transition.

The ICE’s Enabling Better Infrastructure programme promotes the strategic planning and prioritisation of infrastructure and allows countries to benchmark themselves against best practice.

This can ensure the public gets the infrastructure that they need, in alignment with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

In case you missed it

  • Laura Cunliffe-Hall, interim lead policy manager at ICE