On 29 and 30 March 2023, in partnership with Earthjustice, Natural Justice convened the first Just Energy Transition Africa (JETA) meeting with the African Environmental Justice Lawyers Collective (AEJLC) and leading energy transition experts in Kenya. These leading energy experts included staff from the World Resources Institute (WRI), E3 Analytics, Business and Human Rights Resource Centre, Sustainable Energy Africa (SEA) and Powershift Africa.
The purpose of the meeting was to strengthen and scale up a major focus of the AEJLC’s work, which aims to accelerate the just energy transition in Africa by seeking to block investment in fossil fuel developments, such as gas power stations, and remove barriers to clean energy in African countries.
The meeting brought together over 40 lawyers and civil society members from 13 countries (including Burkina Faso, Egypt, Guinea, Kenya, Namibia, Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa, Tanzania, and Zimbabwe), with international lawyers and energy transition experts from South Africa, Kenya, Senegal, China, the U.S., and Germany.
The agenda included discussing priorities for action to accelerate the just transition, a presentation from Toby Couture from E3 Analytics on the African Continental Energy Master Plan and Policy; regulatory and finance needs to accelerate the clean energy transition, overcoming barriers to clean energy deployment, identification of priority clean energy work, what is a just transition and a just energy transition, discussions on regional work of participants and what support JETA can give moving forward.
The JETA Initiative at Natural Justice, although in its infancy, is already undertaking an extensive amount of work, partnership building, research and cross-learning. We are excited about where the Initiative will take our community partners and the possibility for developing energy democracy and movements towards sustainable, green energy. This is being led by Lauren Nel and supported by various other staff within Natural Justice and in partnership.
We believe this is an important space to support our work achieving environmental justice across the continent, knowing that Africa is both energy poor, but rich in sunshine and wind.
The JETA Initiative hopes to, in collaboration with the AEJLC, build a pan-African legal network that will assist in ensuring that across Africa there are just energy transitions that take place trough regulatory reform and litigation.
We invite lawyers, activists, scientists any other stakeholders to join the JETA Initiative to check out the web page with our contact details https://naturaljustice.org/jeta/