The Board of the Green Climate Fund (GCF) has approved $170.9 million in financing for the African Development Bank’s Leveraging Energy Access Finance Framework (LEAF) program in a bid to unlock the Program’s aim to achieve commercial and local-currency financing for decentralized renewable energy (DRE) projects in six countries: Ghana, Guinea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Nigeria and Tunisia.

The financing provided by GCF is part of an overall $900 million program budget to scale up the roll-out of mini-grids, solar home systems, and commercial and industrial solar solutions in the listed countries.

The acting Director of GCF’s Private Sector Facility, Tony Clamp, noted that the partnership between GCF and AfDB is timely and will seek to help the program countries deal with the impact of Covid.

“GCF is delighted to partner with the African Development Bank to support this timely and critical program for decentralized renewable energy across these six African countries. Green Climate Fund’s commitment will help unlock much-needed commercial capital and local currency financing to help overcome financing barriers exacerbated by Covid-19” he said.

According to a statement by AfDB, under LEAF, Africa’s abundant solar resources will be harnessed to provide renewable energy to 6 million people and businesses, and will also prevent 28.8 million tonnes in CO2 emissions over the lifetime of the systems. Speaking on the deal, Dr. Kevin Kariuki, the African Development Bank’s Vice President for Power, Energy, Climate and Green Growth, said:

“GCF’s approval of LEAF is a significant boost for the African Development Bank’s twin ambitions of accelerating electricity access and supporting the transition to clean energy on the continent using decentralized renewable energy solutions, and moreover facilitated through local financing”.