Green economy innovation session held

Valerie Larbi and Kobina Nyanteh

The Climate Innovation Centre (GCIC) has partnered with the International Development Innovation Alliance (IDIA) to co-host a Green Economy Innovation Session and hold conversations with the donor community. within and outside Ghana, on issues around the Ghana climate and enterprise ecosystem.

IDIA is a collaborative platform that unites the top leadership of innovation teams, labs and departments from renowned development agencies worldwide. Together, their mission is to promote and advance innovation as a vital means of accomplishing sustainable development as outlined by the United Nations’ 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda. Through this unique partnership, IDIA aims to foster innovation across different sectors to create lasting and meaningful change toward a more sustainable future.

During the Green Economy Innovation Session, Executive Director-GCIC, Ruka Sanusi, gave an overview of the current climate trends in Ghana and highlighted opportunities and challenges which exist in using innovation as a catalyst for transitioning to a green economy. Drawing from insights gained from the GCIC’s Policy Alternatives for a Green Economy initiative, Sanusi presented key learnings on how innovation can be leveraged to achieve sustainable economic growth in Ghana. These learnings were taken from work that the Ghana Climate Innovation Centre carries out supported by Global Affairs Canada, over a period of four (4) years from August 2021 to August 2025. During this time, GCIC will incubate a total of 240 climate-entrepreneurs from across Ghana in the small and growing business sector.

The session explored the current landscape of climate ‘green economy’ innovation in Ghana, combining insights at a national ecosystem level with experiences of two climate-entrepreneurs from Ghana, Valerie Larbi of Mana Mobility, and Kobina Nyanteh of Translight Solar & Transvolt Ghana Ltd. – a GCIC Incubator alumni. The two innovators gave insights into bringing new green economy innovations to the Ghanaian market, and reflected on their experiences as green entrepreneurs in the country.

Valerie spoke about the work her company is carrying out in Ghana, designing and building electric bikes and cars to satisfy the demand for low cost, sustainable transportation; while Kobina Nyanteh spoke about his business accelerating electricity access in Africa through renewable energy.

According to Valerie, African markets are home to 40% of global used-vehicles, 80% of which do not meet basic emission standards. Many of these cars are exported to African markets after 10-15 years in markets such as the US and Europe, and do not last long on Ghanaian roads. Her company, Mana Mobility, has aptly realised that no local manufacturer is producing vehicles to fulfil the emerging demand for electric vehicles to be used on the continent, and has embarked on a journey to create electric vehicles which have been designed to suit the context of Africa.

By 2028, the MANA ecosystem intends to generate over 100,000 quality inclusive jobs and – sequester 1.1 million tonnes of CO2.

Kobina Nyanteh, CEO-Translight Solar & Transvolt Ghana Ltd., was an entrepreneur in Cohort 1 of the GCIC Business Incubator. Translight has been focused on marketing solar solutions for the past couple of years, and also defining solutions for the technology and financial challenges. In the next ten years, they hope to install an aggregate of 10GW solar systems to create 10,000 jobs, 40% of which will go to women and aim to offset 16.5 million tonnes of carbon dioxide.

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