Countries in Sub-Saharan Africa are uniquely positioned in the journey to a clean energy system, with the fastest growing energy demand and lowest rates of access to reliable, clean energy. While the opportunity to enhance people’s lives and national economies is substantial, there are flaws in the way we think and talk about energy in the region, and a lack of connection between stakeholders, which are blocking necessary change.

A new Policy Brief from WRI and the Energy Transitions Commission (ETC), A Path Across the Rift, has identified the common misconceptions and gaps in research which need to be addressed for policy makers and investors to move forward with energy planning. Common myths of a uniform African continent and simplistic ideas of abundant natural resources should be replaced by country-specific energy plans, informed by place-specific evidence from the granular level right up to the supporting ecosystem of infrastructure, policy and finance.

Following the launch of the Policy Brief and the Africa Energy Transitions Dialogue Platform on the sidelines of Africa Climate Week, WRI Africa will host a webinar to explore the findings of our analysis, explain their relevance to the decisions that need to be made on energy transition, and profile what WRI Africa and our partners are doing on the ground to enable Africa-led energy transitions. The webinar will feature a moderated panel discussion, with questions from the audience, to explore the research, finance, and policy angles of these issues.



  • Dr Rebekah Shirley, Deputy Director, WRI Africa
  • Dr Sebastian Sterl, Lead Author, A Path Across the Rift
  • Mary Githinji, Senior Engagement Manager - Clean Energy Transition, WRI Africa
  • Dr Rose Mutiso, Research Director, Energy for Growth Hub
  • Mekalia Paulos, Energy Transitions Lead, UNECA
  • Dr Megan Davies, Researcher, Centre for Sustainability Transitions, Stellenbosch University
  • Jeroen Huisman, Programme Director, Blended Finance Taskforce


This event will be held in English with simultaneous interpretation into French, Spanish and Portuguese. Recordings in each language will be made available.