Nigerian Minister of power, works and housing, Babatunde Fashola, has announced the construction of the first solar power project in Nigeria which is the 1.2megawatts solar power plant in the lower Usuma Dam in Abuja. The project is aimed at boosting the country’s renewable energy position.
Nigeria is home to enormous energy resources such as petroleum, natural gas, coal, nuclear power and tar sands, according to the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) chief sub-regional officer, Mr. Bakary Dosso.
The development comes even as chief executive officer (CEO) of Royal Dutch Shell, Mr. Ben Van Beurden, said the company plans to spend as much as $1 billion a year on its New Energies division as the transition toward renewable power and electricity cars accelerates.
He also said that, Shell sees opportunities in hydrogen fuel-cells, liquefied natural gas and next-generation biofuels for air travel, shipping and heavy freight areas of transport for which batteries aren’t adequate.
The speech brought to the fore, the transformation that is already taking place in the renewable energy subsector in the industrialized world while Nigeria is still yet to provide electricity for its teeming population.
He however, added that despite these enormous resources, the country has failed to tap, some even when undergoing epileptic power supply making her not only one of the harshest business environments under the globe but also very uncompetitive.
There is no doubt that the world is moving towards renewable energy as the fuel of the future, Nigeria is said to be endowed with all it takes to succeed in this venture, but until operators of the various segments of the energy sector start to think along the perspective of the Shell CEO who said that when one considers the areas of the world where energy demand is still expanding, like Asia and sub-Saharan Africa, there is an enormous opportunity.