ABUJA – Industry leaders and experts from the energy sector have united in a clarion call for bolstered support to the renewable energy sector, citing its pivotal role in addressing Nigeria’s persistent energy poverty. The collective voice emerged during a workshop orchestrated by the Renewable Energy & Energy Efficiency Association (Alliance) in Abuja, where stakeholders underscored the potential of renewable energy to revolutionize the country’s energy landscape.
Highlighting the prospect of the renewable energy sector to substantially enhance the nation’s energy supply, Dr. Joy Ogaji, CEO of the Association of Power Generation Companies (APGC), emphasized the abundance of solar resources in Nigeria. Dr. Ogaji asserted that harnessing solar potential could yield an astounding 427 Gigawatts of electricity.
While recognizing the progress of various renewable energy initiatives, Dr. Ogaji lamented the absence of a unified connection to the National grid. A majority of projects operate off-grid, encompassing solar home systems and rooftop solar installations. However, the absence of comprehensive data impedes a clear understanding of the overall energy output across the nation.
Dr. Ogaji also pinpointed the cost disparity between energy generated from solar sources and traditional utilities. Renewable energy costs currently stand at $0.50-0.6 per kilowatt-hour (kwh), whereas traditional utility costs are considerably lower at $0.105/kwh.
Micro and Development Finance expert, Prof. Frank Amagwu, further elaborated on the transformative potential of renewable energy. Prof. Amagwu emphasized that renewable energy has the capacity to offer reliable energy sources to Nigeria’s vast population, including small and medium-scale businesses, thereby fostering economic growth and stability.
“As we embrace renewable energy, we must leverage it to create added value. This shift will ensure a consistent and efficient power supply, rendering us less reliant on NEPA or small generators,” Prof. Amagwu stated.
The inauguration of the Renewable Energy & Energy Efficiency Association (REEEA) Governing Council reinforced the commitment to advancing the renewable energy sector. Prof. Magnus Onuoha, the President of REEEA, highlighted the organization’s core mission to facilitate collective efforts for the sector’s growth.
Prof. Onuoha highlighted the latent potential of renewable energy to empower women, promote youth development, and contribute to national advancement. He emphasized the necessity of cultivating local indigenous developers to ensure sustainable growth within the sector.
He further noted, “Historically, our local developers lacked access to the necessary products and financing. We are now in a pivotal era where we can harness the potential of renewable energy to foster indigenous development and contribute to the nation’s progress.”