FG, UNDP plan $218 million renewable energy project
Determined to unlock large-scale solar cell projects and adopt Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Actions (NAMAs) under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), the Federal Government has jump-started process for the launch of Nigeria’s first commercial on-grid renewable energy (RE) project.
The project worth over $218 million will contribute to the reduction of greenhouse gases (GHGs) related to the renewable electricity targets established voluntarily by the federal authorities as part of the National Determined Contributions (NDCs), which aim to achieve a contribution of 10 per cent installed capacity of various sources of renewables by 2030.
Coming under United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and Global Environment Facility (UNDP-GEF) Nigeria project, a Geographic Information System (GIS) -based tool will be developed to guide private developers in geographical locations for solar cells, wind and biomass projects across Nigeria based on several criteria, including renewable energy resource potential, grid coverage and stability, environmentally sensitive areas, and physical infrastructure.
Similarly, the project will develop a standardised baseline for the electricity sector as part of the development of a measurement, reporting, and verification (MRV) system for quantifying GHG emission reductions.
The energy sector is by far the largest source of GHG emissions in Nigeria, accounting for over 70 per cent of the country’s total GHG emissions (155.34 MtCO2e in 2000).
Over 85 per cent of energy sector emissions emanated from fuel combustion activities, and the remaining from fugitive fuel emissions.
Specifically, the proposed NAMA project – De-risking renewable energy NAMA for Nigeria power sector – is expected to anchor the NAMA activities around a 100 MW solar PV baseline project in Bauchi, North-East being implemented by Nigerian Solar Capital Partners (NSCP).
Meanwhile, an inception workshop on De-risking Renewable Energy NAMA for Nigeria power sector and Sustainable Fuelwood Management in Nigeria organised by Energy Commission of Nigeria in collaboration with UNDP-GEF Nigeria recently in Calabar, Cross River State, which attracted stakeholders in the industry.
Speaking at the forum, ECN Director, Linkages and Consultancy, Okon Ekpenyong, an engineer, explained that the project originates from the government’s willingness to establish long-term climate change mitigation targets, placing it in a stable policy context that strongly favour its sustainable development, economic growth and job creation.
According to him, the project will create long-term impact of catalyzing private investment to implement the RE NAMA that can generate cumulative direct emission reductions of around 0.57 MtCO2 and indirect GHG emission reductions between 6.61 and 9.72 MtCO2 from utility-scale solar PV plants alone.
He said: “NAMAs can be used to support the development and implementation of NDCs in the context of a post-2020 climate regime and as a means to engage non-Annex 1 countries in mitigation efforts is embedded in the UNFCCC discussions and negotiations.”
“The baseline projects will demonstrate improved performance in terms of clean electricity output that is compatible with grid stability and the utilisation of technologies that can be adopted by future renewable energy generation projects.
“The capacity of Lagos Energy Academy will be built to deliver RE trainings to IPPs, undergraduate students, and public institutions on a cost-recovery basis. ”
UNDP Country Director, Mandisa Mashologu represented by Team Leader, Environment and Sustainable Development, Mr. Muyiwa Odele said the inception meeting is part of the requirement for GEF and to create awareness on commencement in the implementation of the project.
She urged the stakeholders to review the project contextual analysis, which was concluded two years ago to reflect emerging issues in the country such as new opportunities, Paris agreement, power sector reform, Green Climate Fund as Nigeria is yet to submit any proposal.
Other areas, Mashologu wants the participants to dwell include Nigeria’s NDCs that targets the power sector, economic recession and government response through the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan; the steady growth of private sector actors in renewable energy and the transformation of the global market.