Nigeria’s Investment In Renewables

National Economy

The population of the Federal Republic of Nigeria is approximately 210.51 million people[1]. In 2018, 56.5% of the people in this West African country had access to electricity[2].

In 2019, Nigeria’s economy was ranked 26th in gross domestic product (GDP) in the world[3]. The country’s economy is dependent[4] on the export of  crude petroleum, natural gas, scrap vessels, metal tubing, and cocoa beans.

Environment Policies

In 1979, Nigeria enacted the Associated Gas Reinjection Act, which set 1984 as the deadline for oil companies to stop routine gas flaring in the country.

In 2016, Nigeria signed the Paris Climate Agreement[5], committing to an unconditional 20% reduction in greenhouse gas emission by 2030, compared to business-as usual levels.

In 2019, Nigerian utilities used natural gas (73.1%), oil (14.2%), and renewable energy (12.7%) to generate electricity in the country[6]. Hydropower is the primary source of renewable energy in the country.

Recent renewable energy projects in Nigeria include:

  • Government Solar Program – Federal Government of Nigeria has announced a plan to install photovoltaic solar panels to provide off-grid electricity to 304 schools and health care facilities across the nation.
  • 200 MW Solar Project – In February 2021, Singaporean renewable energy company, B&S Power Holding signed an agreement to build a photovoltaic solar project at a site approximately 250 miles south of the nation’s capital, Abuja.
  • 700 MW Hydropower Project – The China National Electric Engineering Company (CNEEC) is continuing work on the Zungeru hydropower project, which is located approximately 120 miles northwest of Abuja. The hydropower project is scheduled to be commissioned by year-end 2022.
  • 3,050 MW Hydropower Project – The China National Electric Engineering Company (CNEEC) is continuing work on the Mambilla hydropower project, which is located on the Dongo River, approximately 325 miles southeast of Abuja. The hydropower project is scheduled to be commissioned by 2030.

Conclusions

Commercial oil was first discovered in Nigeria in 1956[7]. In 2021, Nigeria is the 6th largest oil[8] and 13th largest natural gas[9] exporting country in the world.

The export of oil and natural gas is critical to Nigeria’s economy. Why then is Nigeria investing in renewable energy? Economics pure and simple.

Nigeria has vast renewable energy resources including hydropower, solar, wind, and biomass. The country’s investment in renewable energy has little to do with the country’s commitment to the Paris Climate Agreement.

Nigeria’s move to renewable energy is being driven by the economics of preserving the nation’s most valuable export – oil and natural gas.

Jack Kerfoot

Website – “Our Energy Conundrum”

www.jack kerfoot.com

 

[1] Nigeria Population (2021) –  May 13, 2021 www.worldometers.info

[2] Nigeria – The World Bank Group

[3] Gross Domestic Product 2019 – World Bank DataBank

[4] The Observatory of Economic Complexity (OEC) – Nigeria

[5] Carbon Brief “Paris 2015: Tracking Country Climate Pledges”

[6] U.S. Energy Information Agency – Nigeria 2018

[7] Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) – Nigeria

[8] KANOEMA, World Data Atlas – Exports of Crude Oil, Including Condensate

[9] CIA World Factbook

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