Nigeria’s renewable energy sector comes of age

Electricity

Electricity

By OKORO CHINEDU

LAGOS, (CAJ News) – STAKEHOLDERS from Nigeria government, utilities, consultants and investors will next month converge in Lagos to discuss the challenges of local markets, capacity building and investment in the regional power sector.

The summit will be held under the auspices of the West African Power Industry Convention (WAPIC) on November 24-25.

WAPIC will focus on Nigeria’s renewable energy potential as clean the power sector comes of age and offer a unique opportunity for African countries to have a diversified energy mix.

Ahead of the event, an energy expert has urged government to deploy renewable energy around the country in an effort to augment power supplies.

Dr Afolabi Otitoju, a renewable energy expert and consultant for the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (ECREEE).

“Renewable energy over the last two years has received significant attention from policy makers, private sector, civil society, and others owing to its great potential in the country,” he said.

He pointed out the recent transition of the electricity sector from a publicly owned entity to a private sector led institution had also helped to catalyse the need for the deployment of renewable energy in various locations of the country.

“The approval of the National Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Policy (NREEEP) by the Federal Executive Council in May this year also marked a great achievement for the sector.”

Otitoju said the exciting thing about such energy was the advantage of renewables over other conventional energy sources.

“The integration of renewable energy systems into the national system need not follow the conventional power infrastructure,” he said.

The expert explained renewable technologies were compatible with a decentralised, stand-alone or small power generating unit, which enabled local/rural communities far from urban areas to have access to basic electricity needs.

“Furthermore renewable energy off-grid systems do not put unnecessary burden on existing grid capacity, neither do they require system balancing nor need to be managed by the national grid system operators,” he said.

“Hence, there is a unique opportunity for African countries to have a diversified energy mix and yet to limit the risks of exposing the continent to the current high costs of power infrastructure which are not expected to abate in the near future.”

Spintelligent, the leading South Africa-based trade exhibition and conference organiser, and the African office of Clarion Events Ltd, based in the United Kingdom, is organising WAPIC.

– CAJ News

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