"This year, the world needs to come together in Egypt to take care of unfinished business and make sure the promises made in Glasgow at COP26 turn into Paris compliant policies and accelerated action on the ground."
- Ben Backwell, CEO, Global Wind Energy Council
Brussels, March 1, 2022 - The Global Wind Energy Council (‘GWEC’) today launched the wind industry’s journey to COP27 campaign at the new West Bakr wind farm in Egypt.
Following the visit, the GWEC team will be meeting throughout the week with Egyptian authorities to plan how the wind industry can contribute to the crucial talks in Sharm-El-Sheikh in November.
Wind energy is one of the most crucial tools which the world has to eliminate carbon emissions and reach Net Zero, and along with solar PV, wind will form the backbone of the global energy system by 2050.
As the AR6 report from the IPCC lays out in clear terms, “any further delay in concerted anticipatory global action on adaptation and mitigation will miss a brief and rapidly closing window of opportunity to secure a liveable and sustainable future for all.” The costs of climate change are enormous and impact human lives, nature and social welfare around the world. Without drastic action to curb emissions, these costs will only accelerate, putting developing economies and marginalised communities at the most risk.
To prevent runaway climate change, the world needs faster emissions reductions, meaning a rapid and urgent phaseout of fossil fuels and replacement with renewable energy.
GWEC’s COP27 work will ensure that the wind industry’s voice is heard by world leaders, business leaders and global communities and that countries can quickly adopt wind technology and reap the benefits of investment, economic growth and job creation.
Lekela Power’s West Bakr wind farm in the Gulf of Suez - which will be officially inaugurated this week - is an example of wind power reducing emissions and enabling investment. West Bakr increased Egypt’s wind energy capacity by 18% when it started operations in 2021. The site represents a key step on the country’s path to producing 20% of its electricity from renewable energy by 2022. This site shows the power of mobilising public and private investment in renewable energy to support a country’s Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) and climate goals.
To support our work in the run up to Sharm El-Sheikh, GWEC has teamed up with Lekela Power as its country partner in Egypt and a member of the Global Wind Energy Coalition for COP27. Lekela will take an active role in GWEC’s work in the build up to COP27 and at the event itself.
As part of our partnership, the Global Wind Energy Council is delighted to welcome Gihan Montaser to the team on secondment from Lekela. Gihan will take up a position as our COP27 Officer until December. The role will bring expertise on the Egyptian energy market and the country’s preparations for COP to the GWEC team.
Ben Backwell, CEO of GWEC said: “This year, the world needs to come together in Egypt to take care of unfinished business and make sure the promises made in Glasgow at COP26 turn into Paris compliant policies and accelerated action on the ground. West Bakr shows the power of wind energy to transform power systems and economies and we are delighted to be here to meet the Egyptian COP team, key government officials and local industry and investors ahead of COP27 in Sharm El Sheikh.”
“Net zero will be achieved with increased renewable energy ambitions and long-term energy plans that result in projects like the one in West Bakr. This single wind farm adds around 250MW of capacity to Egypt’s grid, while helping avoid 550,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions. That is delivery on ambition, something the world needs to see from all governments.
“We’re delighted to be working with Lekela this year to help ensure the wind industry makes its voice heard in Egypt, and that the region’s voice is heard in the wind industry.
On Gihan Montaser joining the Team, GWEC CEO Ben Backwell said: “I’d like to welcome Gihan Montaser to the GWEC team. Her local knowledge and expertise in the region’s energy market will be vital to delivering a strong message from the Wind Industry to world leaders in November at Sharm El-Sheikh.”
Faisal Eissa, General Manager for Lekela Egypt said: “I’m delighted that we’ll be partnering with the Global Wind Energy Council for the upcoming COP27 in Egypt later this year. It’s a fantastic opportunity to highlight the role renewables are playing in helping to tackle climate change and to show Egypt’s leadership in clean energy. Projects such as our West Bakr Wind farm are hugely important for the region, providing access to clean, reliable power and supporting the transition to a more sustainable Egypt.”