Energy deficit and energy poverty have become a major obstacle to growth and development in East Africa. In general East African countries underperform in energy access (around 27% average) compared with the sub-Saharan average of 30,5% which can go up (UN Economic Commission for Africa, 2014).
One of the major energy issues is price volatility and energy security as East Africa suffers from high prices in the energy market and shrinking natural energy resources. The deficit in electricity supply and the lack of access to sustainable energy services hampers the satisfaction of basic human needs. The EU-EA Regional Strategy Paper revealed that 70% of the total inhabitants do not have access to sustainable energy sources. This leaves the region on a high dependence on fossil fuels, energy insecurity and high-carbon emission systems, which together with climate change provoke a very complex situation for the region. In sum, restricted access to energy resources is hampering the East African region from sustainable development.
The ENRICH & SUCCEED Network projects "Blueprint for Cooperation in Energy Access and Efficiency in East Africa" is the main output of the International Conference “Fostering Cooperation in Energy Efficiency and Accessibility in East Africa”, organised by the ENRICH and SUCCEED Network projects in Zanzibar, Tanzania on 13th and 14th March, 2017.
The Conference brought together close to 60 people from 12 countries, all involved in the field of Energy from academia, researchers, project managers, NGOs, representatives of the industry and policy makers, in order to encourage dialogue and strengthen cooperation links in the energy sector in East Africa. Furthermore, the Conference raised awareness of the real needs of Science, Technology and Innovation related to Energy Access and Efficiency, and foster discussions on how the Higher Education system can contribute to this.