UK government to help fund 13 green projects in South Africa – including a company that turns insect larvae into food

 ·6 Oct 2021

The UK’s Climate Finance Accelerator (CFA) says it will support 13 low-carbon projects in South Africa, helping them to access finance from investors.

The CFA is funded through the UK government’s Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).

“By bringing together stakeholders who can develop and finance climate projects at scale, the CFA will support South Africa’s efforts to meet the priorities set out in its nationally determined contribution under the Paris Agreement,” the UK’s high commission to South Africa said.

Projects in the CFA cohort come from a range of sectors including waste management, energy and transport. Some of them will increase sustainable mobility alternatives in cities while reducing emissions, whilst others support the growth of renewable energies in South Africa.

Acting British High Commissioner to South Africa, Adam Bye, said: “South Africa’s Cabinet recently approved a new more ambitious Nationally Determined Contribution ahead of COP26. To help deliver this level of ambition by 2030 and net-zero by mid-century, every sector of the economy will need to develop low-carbon alternatives.

“I am therefore delighted to see the projects the Climate Finance Accelerator is supporting in its first cohort, including in key sectors like water, sustainable agriculture, waste management and green transport.”

The CFA’s support, Bye said, is all about helping unlock the finance that these and other innovative projects will need as part of delivering green growth and transition.

13 projects from 120 entrants

The 13 projects have received tailored support including individual needs assessment discussions and analysis of each of the projects from financial and technical perspectives, ahead of a four-day event at the end of October.

The October event will allow project proponents to refine their financial structuring further through tailored discussions with interested financial institutions.

The CFA projects include:

  • Go-Lectric – Providing electric scooters to middle and low-income urban commuters and the growing short-distance delivery market. Also developing solar-powered battery charging infrastructure.
  • The Green Cab – Setting up a Cab Division where women owner-drivers will operate electric vehicles on a national e-hailing app under The Green Cab brand plugged into corporate services.
  • Greenline Africa – Aims to revolutionise the way industrial processing produces their heat and steam by transitioning away from fossil fuels to a powerful renewable source – a dynamic solar thermal concentrator. This will reduce manufacturing costs and create sustainable jobs.
  • MOTU – The installation of cloud-based metering and renewable energy equipment in new developments and retrofit buildings. Energy use is monitored in real-time, with artificial intelligence optimising the use of energy over time.
  • RBN Fund Managers and GFA Climate and Infrastructure  – New instruments to address funding climate infrastructure in Southern Africa by streamlining project financing into a single blended finance instrument through a partnership between commercial banks and institutional investors.
  • Renewco – Cutting edge Biogas and other renewable energy solutions for small-medium scale operations, positively impacting the natural environment through waste stream management and recovery of water to use for irrigation.
  • Restore Africa Funds – Promotes climate-smart conservation and regenerative agriculture at scale by supporting farmers to adapt to climate change while mitigating agriculture-based emissions and increasing soil carbon sequestration.
  • SANERGY – Applies a circular economy approach to safe waste treatment and reuse while addressing critical food security and environmental challenges in fast-growing cities. Sanergy’s Nairobi facility can transform 72,000 t/yr of waste into insect protein for animal feeds, organic fertilisers for horticulture, and biomass fuel for industry. They are now scoping out expansion to South Africa.
  • Spark Plaid Solar – A solar rooftop marketplace that manages and streamlines the fragmentation of solar installers, product suppliers and financiers to make solar simple for homeowners and businesses.
  • Ukuqala Okusha – The first industrial Black-owned organic fertiliser company to enter the agricultural arena. Sewage is treated using black soldier flies, from which fertiliser protein oil and water are extracted. The profits from the fertiliser are then reinvested into the community.
  • Wetility – Enabling clients to generate and store solar energy, automatically release the stored electricity to power homes and businesses, stay shielded from grid outages and save on energy costs.

Read: Eskom is now the biggest sulfur dioxide polluter in the world: researchers.

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