Nigeria adopting phase-down approach to energy transition — Komolafe

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Mr Gbenga Komolafe, the Chief Executive, Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC) says Nigeria is adopting a phase-down approach to transiting to cleaner sources of energy.

Komolafe said this at the Africa Economic Summit on Wednesday in Lagos.

Represented by Mr Bashir Indabawa, Head, National Data Repository, NUPRC, he said that Nigeria is committed to achieving a low carbon footprint.

Komolafe said the global energy transition is a reality, adding that it is affecting investments in fossil fuel industries.

“Nigeria is fully committed to the COP 26 agreement, having pledged to achieve net-zero targets by the year 2060.

“However, the implementation process would have to align with our strategic national interest toward energy security and sustainability.

“In keeping with this commitment, we will be adopting the ‘phase-down’ as against the ‘phase-out’ approach in exploitation and utilisation of our endowed energy resources.”

Komolafe said the government had adopted gas as its transition fuel and is working toward gas reserves growth, optimising gas production, increasing domestic gas utilisation as well as gas flare elimination.

Mr Justice Derefaka, Technical Adviser, Gas Business and Policy Implementation to the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, said the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) is critical to gas development.

Derefaka said the PIA had generous fiscal provisions aimed at attracting investment in gas exploitation and utilisation.

According to him, other policies aimed at deepening gas utilisation in Nigeria include the Decade of Gas initiative, the National Gas Expansion Programme and the National Gas Flare Commercialisation Programme.

Mr Sharfuddeen Mahmoud, General Manager, Market, Competition and Rates Division, Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), said there is chronic energy poverty in Nigeria.

Mahmoud said the problem is being addressed through the gas-to-power initiative of the Federal Government with agreements being put in place to ensure stable supply of gas to electricity generation companies.

He said NERC is also giving support to renewables which is being piloted by the Rural Electrification Agency to provide off-grid electricity for Nigerians.

Mr Bolaji Osunsanya, the Chief Executive Officer, Axxella Group, said creation of gas-based industrial clusters across Africa would boost the continent’s economy.

Osunsanya, represented by Mr Fisayo Duduyemi, the Chief Strategy Officer, Axxella Group, said the company has been making massive investments to bring gas closer to industries in Nigeria.

Speaking earlier, Mr Brian Reuben, the Founder, Africa Economic Summit said the summit was aimed at proffering solutions to the economic problems affecting Africa.

Reuben said in spite its huge potential and vast natural resources, Africa is still lagging behind in terms of human capital development.

He said there is the need for African countries to increase collaboration and forge strategic partnerships that would reposition the continent for greatness.