Caserta, 23rd of June 2023 – Between the 19th and 23rd June 2023, RES4Africa Foundation successfully carried out the high-level training initiative Powering North Africa's and Eastern Mediterranean Sustainable Development. The training was set at the Royal Palace of Caserta, and it relied on the support of the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, the National School of Administration (SNA) of the Italian Presidency of the Council of Ministers, and on the collaboration with the University of Naples Federico II. In such a framework, high-level managers and institutional representatives from Libya, Lebanon, Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, and Egypt experienced an unprecedented occasion to create networks and exchange knowledge, with such a space being particularly relevant due to the current situation of some of the involved countries. The participants were also provided with lectures and field visits on technical, economic and regulatory topics related to the energy transition of Southern and Eastern Mediterranean countries.
With temperatures rising 20% faster than the global average, climate change has significantly impacted North Africa and the Eastern Mediterranean. This has resulted in heatwaves, water shortages, the loss of biodiversity, and threats to food production and livelihoods. To combat this, nations have vowed to take action on the global environment and set high goals for renewable energy. Knowledge sharing between local managers, decision makers and Institutional representatives of the shores of the Mediterranean can help toovercome this problem, promote innovation, boost energy efficiency, and foster economic growth. For this reason, under the RES4Africa Academy umbrella, the training has been designed to provide the participants with a set of technical, economic, and regulatory core competencies related to the energy transition.
The aim of the training was to strengthen the renewable energy-related expertise of 34 high-level managers and professionals operating in the MENA region's energy sector: from public institutions, national authorities, and energy companies, to implementing agencies, research institutions, and civil society organizations that were selected and provided with a full scholarship.
During the week participants confronted with frontal lectures, which gave a comprehensive overview of the main topics related to the region’s energy transition with a focus on specific trends: from energy management, efficiency measures and electrification, to cross-sectoral decarbonization enablers, circular economy, Water-Energy-Food Nexus, project bankability and finance, grids and electricity infrastructures. All lessons were delivered by experienced managers, professionals, academics, and high-skilled technicians from RES4Africa’s staff, network and Federico II University professors. The attendees visited two top-notch realities of the Italian renewable energy value chain: FAAM's factory of lithium batterie located in Teverola, and a 5 MW PV plant property of NextEnergy Solar Fund, in Marcianise. Additionally, they were provided with an art and culture visit to the Royal Apartments and English garden, which allowed them to discover more about the history and culture of Caserta.
"Providing key stakeholders and decision-makers with the capacity to develop and effectively implement renewable energy programs is essential for Africa's just energy transition.” said Roberto Vigotti, Secretary General of RES4Africa. “This type of training not only facilitates investments while fostering public-private partnerships, but it also improves managerial, technical and entrepreneurship skills to benefit the entire continent. With initiatives such as this training, we are one step closer to ensuring the right investment support to hit the necessary targets in terms of decarbonization and access to energy."
"The field of energy transition and renewable energies is a challenge that requires an aware managerial class, but also one equipped with uncommon knowledge and skills. This course, in collaboration with the Res4Africa Foundation and the University of Naples "Federico II", offers excellent training constructed according to the best models of lifelong learning in the international context and contributes to the creation of a network that will prove valuable in developing relations between our country and those of the southern Mediterranean," declares Professor Paola Severino, president of the SNA.
Full list of trainers and entities:
Amb. Massimo Gaiani (Head of European and international Affairs at SNA); Roberto Vigotti (Secretary General at RES4Africa Foundation); Nadim Abillama (MENA Programme Manager at the International Energy Agency); Ana Rovzar ( Head of international partnerships at RES4Africa Foundation); Florian Ermacora (Head of Unit, DG NEAR, European Commission); Prof. Massimo Dentice D’Accadia (Università Federico II); Prof. Fabio Mottola (Università Federico II); Prof. Mario Pagano (Università Federico II); Fabrizio Bonemazzi (Coordinator RES4Africa Academy at RES4Africa Foundation); Prof. Santolo Daliento (Università Federico II); Victor Rada (Technical Expert at EDP Renewables); Paolo Perani (Sustainability Manager at ABB); Giuseppe Cicerani (Head of Business Development Energy Storage at Enel Green Power); Natalia Pierozzi (Carbon Reduction Excellence Technical Manager at Rina); Sergio Raffaele (KAM Key Account Manager Sales EMEA, Gridspertise); Roberto Flammia (Local Partner at Bonelli Erede); Antonio Cammisecra (Enel Group); Olimpia Ferrara (Head of Maritime Office, Research Center for Economic Studies related to Intesa Sanpaolo Banking Group); Alessandro Steffanoni (Managing Director Energy Industry Intesa Sanpaolo – IMI Corporate & Investment Banking); Antonio Nodari (CEO and Managing Director at AFRY Management Consulting); Fabio Nicolucci (Special Ambassador, Bid Committee for Expo 2030 Roma); Cristina Hanabergh (Head Editorial Secretary at Expo 2030 Roma); Paolo Cutrone (Area Manager Mediterranean countries at RES4Africa Foundation); Rima Jreich (Senior Policy and Regulatory Officer at RES4Africa Foundation); Marco Giustacchini (Partner PwC); Andrea Renzulli (Policy and Regulatory Advisor at RES4Africa Foundation); Daniele Guzzo (Officer Access to Energy at RES4Africa Foundation); Giuseppe Badagliacca (Head of Office, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Directorate General for Political Affairs and Security, Multilateral Cooperation and integration processes in the Euro-Mediterranean space).