solar power africa CIFOR/Flickr

La révolution écologique africaine

LONDRES – Imaginez que vous vous réveilliez un matin sans plus pouvoir accéder aux technologies modernes. Plus de réfrigérateur, plus de cuisinière, plus d’air conditionné. Vos enfants ne peuvent plus faire leurs devoirs après la tombée de la nuit. Vous n’êtes plus en mesure de recharger votre téléphone portable. Vous y êtes, bienvenue dans l’univers de l’Afrique non connectée – un univers dans lequel les défaillances du marché anéantissent impitoyablement toute opportunité de développement.

Près de 150 ans après l’invention de l’ampoule par Thomas Edison, quelque 620 millions d’Africains – soit deux tiers de la population de la région – vivent sans aucun accès à l’électricité. Ils sont encore plus nombreux à recourir à la combustion de biomasse pour cuisiner, plus de 90 % des populations rurales du Malawi, de Tanzanie et du Mozambique utilisant en effet de la paille, du fumier et du bois à brûler. En résulte une pollution de l’air intérieur à l’origine de 600 000 décès chaque année – frappant pour moitié les enfants de moins de cinq ans.

La communauté internationale s’est fixé pour objectif de garantir un accès universel à l’électricité et aux énergies modernes d’ici 2030. Or, le nombre d’individus privés d’électricité en Afrique sub-saharienne ne cesse d’augmenter. Dans 15 ans, si la tendance actuelle se poursuit, 15 millions de personnes supplémentaires vivront sans électricité au sein de la région.

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