?renewable energy is the future?

?Energias renováveis é o futuro?

Mozambique should start preparing for the energy transition, says consultant in renewable energy and climate change, Manuel Mota, in an interview to MZNews. During the interview, the consultant defended the need to decarbonize the economy, stating that renewable energies are the future. Mota also says that the revenues, derived from the gas exploration should be used in the medium and long term to allow, in fact, the investment in renewable energies.

And at this point, does the renewable energy debate make sense for Mozambique?

I think it makes perfect sense. Not only for Mozambique, but in terms of a global perspective. Therefore, I think that Mozambique should clearly work on what is an adaptation to what has been these phenomena and at the same time should also work on what has been climate change, and this mitigation also includes the possible decarbonization of the economy.

So, there we touch again on the subject of gas as an enabler for investments in other renewable energies and we look at the short term even the very long term. This long-term vision should prevail regardless of immediate needs.

To what extent could the energy transition influence the country's economic growth?

As soon as Mozambique is able to demonstrate that the production of gas, or hydroelectric electricity production or other sources, is less carbon intensive than in other countries, it will also have a greater capacity to attract investment.

Until, as I was saying, very well, the entities that finance certain organizations, want to know if there are going to be investments considered green (...) That is, deep down they are going to privilege where there are better conditions in greener investments?if they work in this direction naturally they will have greater capacity to attract international investment in competition with other countries in Africa and the rest of the world.

What are the determining factors for this energy transition to occur?

Well, for now I think that everyone has to be involved here. Civil society organizations, communities and also the government, from the perspective of their policies on the subject, in what way will they encourage or not, (?) and basically create a system of incentives or benefits so that investment in renewable energy is in fact a pole of attraction for the country. So, this will be part of a strategy.

Of course I would say a part funded with gas operation, but eventually with foreign funding because funding in green energy today actually attracts not only organizations working in the energy sector...


Manuel Mota, Ernst & Young || Credits: Edilson Tomás

Do we have the human resources and technology prepared for this energy transition?

That's an excellent question, because you see, the big aspirational ambitions and the governments and the big organizations?many of them are indeed aspirational, and when I say aspirational I mean they often don't know how they're going to get there.

So innovation is clearly going to play an important role in finding solutions to get where you want to go in terms of those goals or those ambitions that are aspirational. Now, it's important that in a transition, there is what you call a just transition, which implies a lot with communities, people, and skills?

I think that there has to be a lot of investment in training here. We have to train people, technicians, we have to put plans in motion and all of this is a symbiosis of small programs, projects, initiatives that have to happen in a parallel way, so that there is also the involvement of the local community, that is not all important, but it is very important that we can find a space, a way for the local communities to be integrated in this process.

How can we exploit the mining activity (which is what we have) and at the same time safeguard environmental issues?

This is a difficult answer to give in short words, but obviously first we have to have plans and policies with a long-term vision of where the country wants to be, aspires to reach. That has to be clear to everyone. Then we have to realize that the country is not going to get there by itself.

There is an inherent vulnerability here in a process that is very complex, that will require a lot of innovation, a lot of process digitization, if we want (?) We have to realize that we need help and involvement from the various stakeholders.

To decarbonize an economy we first have to understand where the greatest carbon intensities of that economy come from (?) Naturally there has to be a very careful survey in order to act in a systematic and concerted way.

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