A Deputy Minister for Energy, Mr Herbert Krapa, has encouraged private entities to invest in renewable energy sources to help the government achieve its sustainable energy targets.
He said the government was working to make energy services “universally acceptable and accessible” to all citizens, and companies needed to complement the effort through various Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives.
Mr Krapa made the call in a speech read on his behalf at the 10th Edition of the Ghana CSR Excellence Awards (GHACEA) held in Accra to celebrate about 20 socially responsible companies in the country.
The Deputy Minister, in his address, said various strategies, including studies to update existing data on small hydro energy potentials, were being deployed to achieve the country’s renewable energy targets.
He said CSR programmes by companies could as well focus on “increasing access to electricity in rural and underserved areas of the country.”
Citing various renewable energy resources in the country, he said the Renewal Energy Act, 2011 (Act 832) among other things, sought to create “enabling environment for attracting private sector investment in the renewable energy sector to ensure the achievement of government’s 10 percent renewable energy target.”
It was against this backdrop that he believed “companies could design and implement CSR efforts that will educate communities about energy conservation and efficient energy use.”
“By raising awareness about the benefit of energy saving practices, companies can reduce energy waste and promote sustainable consumption patterns. This in turn can have a long-term impact on the environment and help mitigate the effects of climate change,” he said.
Mr Krapa applauded organisers, the Centre for Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) West Africa, for promoting CSR initiatives in the country and praised outstanding companies for their efforts.
Award winners included Vivo Energy (CSR Company of the Year), Shirley Kum (CSR Practitioner of the Year), Julian Opuni (CSR CEO of the Year), Vodafone (CSR Telecom of the Year), Fidelity Bank (CSR Bank of the Year), Coca Cola (CSR Manufacturing Company of the Year).
Others were Coconut Groove Hotel (CSR Hospitality Company of the Year), Delta Airlines (CSR Aviation Company of the Year), Blay & Associates (CSR Consultancy & Services Company of the Year), Amanex (CSR SME of the Year), Stratcomm Africa (CSR Award for Greening & Environmental Protection) World Vision (CSR Award for SDG Partnership) Rhythm Foundation (CSR Award for Youth and Disability Inclusion) and many others.
Present at the ceremony were representatives of the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI), Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), Ghana National Chamber of Commerce & Industry (GNCCI) and other partners.
John Kojo Williams, Co-Founder, Centre for CSR West Africa, praised the awardees and urged them to continue making positive impacts within and beyond their operational areas.