Waste management projects topped the list of climate infrastructure projects in need of funding in African cities, according to joint report by CDP and ICLE.

The report identified 181 climate projects disclosed across 53 cities in 22 African countries in 2021 and 2022.

Waste management projects topped the list (50 projects accounting for 27 percent) of total disclosed projects, followed by water management (28 projects accounting for 15.5 percent), transport (27 projects accounting for 15 percent), renewable energy (25 projects accounting for 14 percent), and energy efficiency and buildings (10 percent and 5 percent respectively) with a total of 29 projects.

  • 31 local governments reported a total of 50 waste management projects collectively valued at $935 million and needing more than $356 million in investment. Phasing out open dump sites, constructing sanitary landfills and diverting waste from landfills to more sustainable waste recovery and treatment processes were the main projects.
  • 21 African cities reported a total of 28 water management projects with a collective cost of nearly $1 billion and in need of approximately $544 million in investments. Reported projects include the expansion of water supply networks, the construction of stormwater retention facilities, the distribution of rainwater harvesting equipment, and the building or further development of wastewater treatment facilities.
  • 16 African cities from the sub-Saharan region reported 27 transport-related projects collectively valued at nearly $4.45 billion and in need of $1.5 billion in investment.
  • 19 African local governments disclosed 25 projects in the renewable energy sector, representing roughly 14 percent of total reported projects. These projects were collectively valued at around $840 million needing approximately $378 million in investment. They cover both the demand and supply sides and include actions such as the production and distribution of renewable and clean energy options, the installation of solar-powered streetlights, raising public awareness about the use of cleaner energy sources, and the reduction of wood fuel use.
  • During 2021 and 2022, 18 African cities disclosed a total of 19 energy-efficiency projects and 10 energy -efficient building projects. These projects were collectively valued at around $149 million and need approximately $124 million in investment. 11 projects (40 percent of the projects) were reported by five South African cities. These projects comprise provision or expansion of energy-efficient public lighting systems, energy retrofits of local government buildings, energy efficient cooling of buildings and public awareness-raising initiatives.

About 61 percent of reported projects were at an early stage of development, and 80 percent of the projects (145) were disclosed by cities with a population greater than 500,000, the report noted.

“Of the 181 total projects, 132 reported individual project costs - worth $8.8 billion in total, with an investment need of $3.7 billion. However, this total self-reported investment figure is a significant under-estimate, as the scale of funding needed by African cities is significantly greater for infrastructure,” the report said.

CDP is a not-for-profit organisation working in the climate space while ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability is a global network committed to urban sustainability.

(Writing by Sowmya Sundar; Editing by Anoop Menon)