Women’s leadership in the Renewable Energy transition in Africa: The RE4C story

In the dynamic landscape of Africa’s energy transition, one of the most powerful agents of change often remains overlooked: women. As the continent grapples with the challenges of climate change, energy access, and sustainable development, women are emerging as pivotal leaders, driving transformative shifts towards cleaner and more equitable energy systems.

From rural villages to bustling urban centers, women are emerging as catalysts for positive change in the energy sector, redefining the narrative and shaping a future that prioritizes inclusivity, resilience, and environmental sustainability. Their contributions span diverse realms, from pioneering renewable energy projects to advocating for inclusive policies that prioritize marginalized communities.

Meet Portia Adu-Mensah, founder of Dream Hunt (DH) a Non-Governmental Organization in Ghana and National Coordinator of 350 GROC (Ghana Reducing Our Carbon). Portia is a trained creative activist from Global Power Shift organized by 350.org in Turkey. She is a graduate from Central University College, Faculty of Accounting and Finance with a degree in Banking and Finance. Her love for the environment and urge to fight against climate change in Ghana has inspired and motivated her to lead, join and support environmental campaigns and events that promote environmental sustainability and climate justice. 

The journey began in 2013 when Portia found herself at the Global Power Shift in Turkey. Little did she know that this experience would ignite a fire within her, compelling her to co-found 350 Ghana Reducing our Carbon (350 GROC). Energized and connected with global climate activists, Portia and her spirited comrades set out to confront the looming threat of the Ekumfi Aboano power plant, a coal project that cast a shadow over the lives of thousands.

The battle against Ekumfi Aboano became a crucible, testing the resilience of Portia and her team. Through protests and community engagement that spanned three challenging years, victory was achieved – the coal project was permanently shelved. But for Portia and her dedicated team, this triumph was not the conclusion but the beginning of a new chapter.



Recognizing the need to shift from opposition to empowerment, 350 GROC expanded its horizons. In 2021, they launched the “Renewable Energy for Communities” (RE4C) campaign. The narrative pivoted to empowering local communities, advocating for sustainable alternatives, and ensuring that the voices of women were central. 

In 2022, the RE4C campaign brought together a diverse group of organizations under the banner of the Renewable Energy for Communities Coalition(RE4CC) to accelerate the integration of 10% decentralized renewable energy into Ghana’s energy mix by the year 2030.

Portia Adu- Mensah, National Coordinator, 350 G-ROC,

“At its core, the RE4C campaign is about strengthening communities to take control of our energy future. Through education, advocacy, and collaboration, we are working to build a more sustainable and equitable energy system for all Ghanaians. By centering the voices and experiences of local communities, our campaign aims to ensure that renewable energy policies and projects are responsive to the needs of the people. As we take on these efforts at the grassroots level, we urge the government to enforce the implementation of the country’s renewable energy plans, among them achieving 10% renewable energy in the country’s energy mix by 2030. “

The RE4C campaign has not only raised awareness but has become a beacon of empowerment. The initiatives undertaken, from training 100 women in clean cooking techniques to advocating for improvements in Ghana’s Renewable Energy Act, exemplify the transformative power of women in the energy transition. 

To put the spotlight on women’s leadership in the energy transition in Africa on one hand, 350Africa.org and 350 G-ROC have released a documentary shedding light on the remarkable journey of the Renewable Energy for Communities (RE4C) campaign in Ghana. The documentary, titled “The Renewable Charge,” highlights the origins and achievements of the campaign by 350 G-ROC, which evolved from a volunteer-led anti-coal campaign into a powerful community-centered advocacy movement for renewable energy. The documentary could inspire more than one as it captures the resilience and triumphs of women in the frontline working to build a more sustainable and equitable energy system for all Ghanaians.

The film’s premiere took place in an online webinar on the 8th of March, while community screenings are set to be held in Navrongo in Northern Ghana, the location of Ghana’s first Solar PV utility-scale project on 9th and 10th of March. In addition to the screenings,  350 G-ROC and partners will engage local stakeholders and distribute solar bulbs to communities in the area.

Should you want to watch the documentary or host a screening in your network, visit this page to learn more afrikavuka.org/renewable-charge

Inspired by a blog written by Santiago Sáez Moreno, former Languages and Editorial Specialist at 350.org