StarCore Nuclear Inc, a Canadian Company, has proposed to the Federal Government of Nigeria, the rollout of 23 small modular reactors (SMRs) nuclear power stations to help provide electricity supply which will be accessible to millions of Nigerians who currently have unreliable or no access to electricity.
According to the company, Nigeria is one of the least-electrified nations and the current system is struggling to keep up with the demand for electricity by its 170 million people and growing day by day. The StarCore nuclear proposal will especially benefit the more remote areas of the country where the grid infrastructure is less reliable.
The proposal comprises the erection of 23 micro grids across the more remote regions of the country thus minimizing, or even eliminating, the expenditure that the government will need to make on electricity infrastructure in those target areas.
The StarCore Small Modular Reactors (SMRs) design is inherently safe, as judged by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) which means it cannot overheat and would shut down automatically when there is a problem in operation given that the plant is fully automated.
The company will negotiate a long term Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) for electricity off take since it is a full life cycle manager and does not sell the plants or technology.Their company’s representatives have initiated contacts with the Presidency in Abuja, Nigeria’s federal capital and the proposal has met their approval in principle.
“The next step is to obtain Ministerial Consent by the Honourable Minister of Finance, Mrs. ‘Kemi Adeosun to issue the requisite Federal Government Sovereign Guarantee and Direct Pay Letter of Credit which serves as hedge against political risks on the foreign investment funds”,said the Minister for Power, Works and Housing, Mr.Babatunde Raji Fashola .
Ideally, the sovereign guarantee will enable the international funding experts the Lucot Group Inc,Monaco based International Infrastructure Investment funding giant, to secure funds for the development of StarCore Nuclear modular power stations across the country.
With these arrangements in place, President Muhammadu Buhari’s promises to generate 10,000MW of electricity by 2019 which would shift a step closer to reality and bring jobs and industries to Nigerians, especially people in the remote parts of the country.