William & Mary Environmental Law and Policy Review


Even if the world’s developed nations are able to curb their carbon emissions in the coming years, major hurdles will still exist. One such hurdle is fulfilling energy needs in urbanizing areas, like sub-Saharan Africa. Many global regions are urbanizing but none as rapidly as sub- Saharan Africa. The global share of Africa’s urban residents is expected to grow from 11.3% in 2010 to 20.2% by 2050.


While sub-Saharan African countries have peculiar social and economic characteristics, there are common elements that allow this Note to focus on the region as a whole. This general approach can be adjusted on a country-by-country basis. Some such common elements include: (1) abundant natural resources which can be converted into energy, (2) inefficient local infrastructures by which those resources can be converted into energy, (3) underinvestment in transmission and distribution networks, and (4) affordability constraints.

This abstract has been taken from the author's introduction and Part I of the article.