Global leaders are coming forward and adopting sustainable development goals to achieve prosperous, inclusive and environmental safe societies. Sustainable development report of Africa 2030 stated that in the sustainable goal three-year reality check it was revealed that minimal progress has been made in last few years and there are certain areas where there is no sign of improvement. The struggle in Africa is hard as the continent has to fight with some of its biggest challenges prevailing which include extreme poverty, rapid population growth, the environmental impact of industries, rapid urbanization, deforestation and climate variability.
Africa is considered as the poorest continent in the world it is because every second person in Africa is living below the poverty line. They are not even able to meet the basic human needs leading towards hunger. Africa has one fourth- quarter of the hungry people. The condition is worsening as the population growth in the continent is increasing at rapid growth. According to the World Bank, the population growth in Africa is increasing at a rate of 2.5 per cent per year in comparison to 1.2 per cent in America and Asia. The rapid population has put a lot of stress in the ecosystem of the continent. In addition, it was found that people in Africa are migrating from rural areas to take place in urban parts of the continent. Rapid urbanization can have created new challenges for the environment. It was observed in through research that most of the urban dwellers are residing in slum areas and thy do not even have access to electricity. Apart from all these South Africa is experiencing environmental menace as it is 14th largest emitter of greenhouse gases. The Nigeria oil spills and other oil flares have polluted the environment to such an extent that the continent would have to suffer for the next 50 years.
Africa has 28 per cent of the total land area covered with forest and woodland. But the legacy that the content could have given to the future generation is rapidly degraded through deforestation. Loss of forest has impacted soli protection and the quality of the flow of water. Various parts of Africa like Tanzania stated that the state water resources of the state wereseverely threatened due to deforestation. In addition to these, Inter-Governmental panel on climate change has revealed that the country will suffer greater effects of climate change in comparison to other parts of the world. No rainfall in the arid regions of Africa indicates that there is an increase in drought and desertification in the region. The countries of the west which include Burkina Faso, Benin, Mauritania, Ghana, Nigeria and Niger will have to face water scarcity problem in the future. To overcome all the above-mentioned challenges, the continent requires some stringent actions only then it will be able to achieve its sustainable development goals and become an economically and environmentally stable continent in the world map.
Africa needs to change its economic model, shift from fossil fuels and embrace eco-friendly organization. It needs to bring on anti-climate policies to keep a track on the greenhouse emission rates and water resources which are depleting at a fast rate. The country must promote environmental programs to engage the private sector by providing them with solutions to reduce greenhouse emission from their factories. It must reward those organizations that are practising and implementing sustainable development to help the continent in achieving their goals. Africa must embrace non-renewable sources of energy such as wind, biogas and solar. It must increase a forestation in the regions and try not to lose sight of important signs in climate change. Africa must implement strategies like China to overcome the challenges of sustainable development.
China once was the largest producer of greenhouse gases but with its policies and sustainable goals the country is now leading other countries of the world by becoming the world's most sustainable development superpower. It has won the race of being the most sustainable country by fighting against pollution to poverty. America despite having financial support and being the world's biggest economy the continent is still not a good performer in sustainable development. It is because in the USA people emphasis more on profits at all cost even if they have to generate revenue on the cost of poor and environment they will do so. It is due to this reason the US ranks at 35th position in the year 2018 in world sustainable development rankings. In comparison to both US and Africa, China has done more than what it could have done in a decade. Both the continents must learn from China and take sustainable development seriously by adopting air ten, water ten, soil ten policies. Both the countries must do their part instead of looking through the lens because until and unless they will not take action they will not achieve the sustainable development goals.
The fast depletion of non-renewable sources of energy and climate changes has forced many countries across the globe towards low carbon future. The countries are eliminating fossil fuel usage and ramping up investment in renewable sources of energy i.e. solar, wind, biomass and so on. The countries are challenging each other to join the race and become the first 100 countries to start using renewable sources of energy. Germany set the trend of renewable sources of energy. It is leading the world in solar PV capacity. It is the first country that has changed its energy production to renewable sources of energy. About 78 per cent of Germany's electricity consumption can now be fulfilled with renewable sources of energy. The country is switching off its nuclear power plants. The government has passed legislation to decompose all the nuclear reactors to protect people from Fukushima style disaster in Japan. Another reason for closing the power plants is that it is expensive. Nuclear energy cost is much higher than the energies of the renewable source. Nuclear energy cost between $112 and $189 whereas the cost of solar energy is $36 to $44 per megawatt per hour and the cost of wind power is between $29 and $56 megawatt per hour.
Due to these reasons, Germany decided to improve the use of its renewable sources of energy. The country came out with a master plan named Energiewende to transform the entire energy system into an efficient and renewable form until 2022. Energiewende program has increased generation of electricity with renewable sources to move Germany towards low carbon economy freeing it entirely from nuclear energy system by the middle of the century. It is with this program Germany has shifted its energy production from the dominance of coal and oil. The energy target transitions have replaced nuclear power plants in the country. The country is planning to completely phase out electricity production from coal by 2038.The government thought that phasing out coal can help the country to reach its failed electricity targets. It is seen in the reports that the growth in the carbon emissions from nuclear power plants have been in control after the growth of electricity generation from renewable sources of energy.
In the year 2017, wind surpassed both coal and nuclear energy to become the second-largest source of energy in the country. The country has shared its further plan to increase the use of renewable sources of energy and completely acquire 50 per cent of the total electricity consumption by 2030, 65 per cent by 2040 and 80per cent by 2050. The government is speeding the growth so that it does not miss its targets this time as done in the previous years. Germany understands the importance of renewable sources of energy as most of the energy result in less or no emission. The advantage of using renewable sources of energy is that it can offer low cost and stable energy prices to the citizens. The biggest drawback of renewable sources of energy is that the country cannot solely depend on solar and wind resources because wind energy is maximum in the northeast part and rest part of the country it is not stable thus the country is also investing in the other alternative renewable sources of energy like biogas and so on.
All these measures are taken by German and have proved to be beneficial for the country. It is urging other parts of the world as well to change their electricity production and completely cut down fossil fuels. Being a cloudy country of 8 million people, the country is looking forward towards a bright future by investing solar, wind and biogas energy. It is observed in Germany that leaders of the country actively set the goals for renewable resources and has supported them with investment and growth. The country is betting on solar and wind renewable resources at the same time backing itself for other renewable sources. The solution provided by Germany and its policies can be used by other countries to reduce the carbon emission. Germany has set a blueprint for the other countries of the world.
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