FOR Namibia to move from consumer to supplier status in renewable energy, the youth should take ownership of development in this regard, minister of mines and energy Obeth Kandjoze says.
Speaking at the opening of the high school symposium held by the Namibian youth on renewable energy (NAYoRE) organisation here on Friday, Kandjoze said the renewable energy revolution can greatly reduce unemployment amongst young people.
"It is crucial for Namibian high schools to start the conversation on renewable energy and efficiency. This will prepare the youth for a world that will mostly run on renewable and clean energy," he stated.
The minister said schools can invest in renewable energy technologies, and any excess electricity generated can be put back into the grid through the net metering programme.
Kandjoze thus challenged the learners to start energy conservation programmes in their schools and communities to ensure a commitment to reduce energy usage and integrating renewable energy technologies into public schools.
Despite efforts by the government, 50% of Namibia's population still does not have access to electricity.
"It is your innovation as the youth that will light up Namibia, especially in rural areas, where some learners go to schools without electricity," he noted.
Some 60 learners from 20 high schools in the Khomas region attended the first-ever two-day symposium on renewable energy.
Lectures on various topics such as climate change and energy, an introduction to renewable energy, energy efficiency and auditing, as well as career options in renewable energy formed part of the programme.
This year's symposium was held under the theme 'Sparkling Innovation'.