Quiz: What You Don’t Know About Energy in Africa
Solar panel in Rwanda (Credit: Azuri Technologies/DIVatUSAID)
It's home to millions of people whose homes lack even a single lamp, but it's also a frontier of great change and innovation. How much do you know about sub-Saharan Africa's energy potential?
Quiz by Christina Nunez
What portion of sub-Saharan Africa's people do not have electricity?
- Almost all
More than 600 million people, or about two-thirds of the population, do not have access to reliable power. Though sub-Saharan Africa is home to 13 percent of the world's people, it accounts for just 4 percent of the energy demand.
Which country is set to overtake Nigeria as the region's largest producer of oil over the next decade?
- South Sudan
The International Energy Agency predicts Angola will temporarily surpass Nigeria in crude oil production from 2016 through the early 2020s, partly because of regulatory uncertainty and theft in Nigeria.
Which country is sub-Saharan Africa's biggest coal producer?
- South Africa
South Africa is far and away the largest coal producer in the region and the entire continent, according to U.S. Energy Information Administration figures, ranking seventh in the world.
In Kenya, which renewable source provides the most electricity for the grid and is set to expand even further?
Geothermal has been displacing hydropower in Kenya and now contributes 51 percent of its electricity, a share expected to increase with new projects slated to come online by 2018, according to the World Bank.
Demand for one energy resource will outstrip that for all others combined in coming decades, according to IEA forecasts for the region. What is it?
- Natural gas
"Despite increasing incomes and a move towards other fuels," IEA says, sub-Saharan Africa's energy mix will continue to be dominated by fuel wood, charcoal, and other forms of biomass-derived energy. Indoor pollution from cooking and heating with inefficient stoves causes more than half a million deaths annually in Africa.
Power capacity in the region will quadruple by 2040. How much of the electricity will come from renewable energy?
- 24 percent
- 34 percent
- 44 percent
- 54 percent
IEA predicts that renewables' share will more than double, reaching 44 percent—a share higher than that forecasted for the United States, China, and India.
Fifty percent of the region's hydroelectric capacity lies in one nation. Which one?
- Democratic Republic of the Congo
The DRC has the biggest hydropower potential, according to a report from the consulting firm McKinsey & Company. The cost of some projects, however, might hinder some of that potential.
True or false? Hydroelectric dams have been linked with a higher risk of malaria.
True. The still water in dam reservoirs breeds mosquitoes. A September 2015 study found that almost two-thirds of the dams in sub-Saharan Africa were in malaria-prone areas and linked them to more than 1 million new cases of malaria.
About how many barrels of oil per day are lost to theft in Nigeria?
An estimated 150,000 barrels per day—the equivalent of nearly all of Louisiana's crude output—is diverted from wells in Nigeria, according to IEA. Theft occurs on both a small, domestic level and a large, international one.
How many nuclear reactors exist in Africa?
South Africa is home to the continent's only nuclear plant, Koeberg, which has two reactors on the southwestern coast.
Great work. You have a wide-ranging store of knowledge about sub-Saharan energy.
Way to go! Keep expanding on your Africa energy knowledge, and take the quiz again to improve your score.
You're not quite connected to the facts. See if a second try helps bring the answers to light.
Brush up on your facts at the Great Energy Challenge, and then retake the quiz to see how much you’ve learned.Retake Quiz
More Energy Quizzes
South America has vast energy resources, but how much do you know about the needs and reserves of its individual countries?
You know that poor insulation makes for a drafty, energy-wasting home, but how much do you really know about the true potential of energy efficiency?
You know that demand in Asia is moving energy markets around the world, but how much do you really know about the needs and resources of the world's most populous continent?
Historians say the modern era of energy began on October 17, 1973, when Arab exporters unleashed the "oil weapon" with an embargo against the United States and its allies. How much do you know about the global oil shocks of the past 40 years and how they changed the world?
Every few years, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) releases a new summary of the scientific consensus on climate change. How much do you know about the forces altering the Earth's temperature, according to the IPCC's September 2013 report?
@NatGeoEnergy on TwitterTweets by @NatGeoGreen
Social entrepreneur and National Geographic Explorer Sanga Moses' vision of providing Africa with clean and inexpensive cooking energy is not only helping the environment, but is also empowering his fellow Africans who play an important role in his innovative business.
New Jersey has become a U.S. leader in solar energy capacity. One of its projects turned a polluted landfill into a solar farm. Video.
The unique flame of this cookstove burns the smoke before leaving the chimney, creating very few emissions and leaving behind biochar that can be sold or reinvested into the environment as fertilizer.