In reaction to President Obama signing the Electrify Africa Act into law, Sasanka Thilakasiri, Oxfam America’s Senior Policy Advisor for Climate Change & Energy, made the following statement:
"Oxfam applauds the signing of the Electrify Africa Act of 2015, which aims to provide electricity access to people in sub-Saharan Africa, an area where a lack of access to electricity severely cripples the livelihoods and development of over 600 million people. Oxfam successfully worked to improve the legislation to strengthen provisions on off grid first time energy access for the rural poor and sustainable renewable energy.
"The bill signals bipartisan affirmation of President Obama’s Power Africa Initiative, seeking to provide 30,000 megawatts of new, cleaner electricity and provide access to at least 60 million new connections. Oxfam research has shown that sustainable renewable energy is best positioned to meet the energy needs of the poor in Africa due to accessibility, the majority of whom are not grid connected. Moving forward, clean energy should continue to remain a US priority in supporting energy access in Africa.
"Oxfam looks forward to continue working with the Obama Administration and Congress to ensure that the energy and development needs of the poor are being met through programs like the Electrify Africa Act and Power Africa Initiative."