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Stakeholders Brainstorm on Energy Transition Plan Implementation 

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Stakeholders Brainstorm on Energy Transition Plan Implementation 

Stakeholders in the energy sector on Tuesday converged in Abuja to brainstorm on the implementation of Energy Transition Plan (ETP).

The Nigerian Government launched its Energy Transition Plan (ETP), on August 24.

The plan is designed to simultaneously tackle the challenges of energy poverty and the climate change crisis.

The stakeholders’ dialogue was organised by the Renewable Energy Association of Nigeria (REAN) with the theme“ Understanding the Nigeria Energy Transition Plan.

Speaking at the dialogue, President of REAN, Mr. Ayo Ademilua said that what the plan has done was to identify the key areas where there was currently high emission in Nigeria.

He listed these key areas to include cooking with firewood and charcoal in rural areas as well as gas flaring.

Ademilua said: ”When you move into interior parts of the country, about 60 percent of the people there are still not doing clean cooking and are emitting carbon.

“We have over 120 million people in Nigeria not doing clean cooking and they are emitting carbon.

“I want to congratulate Nigeria for the commercialisation of gas flaring, it is a good step in the right direction.

“From the oil and gas, we have gas flaring; we know what is happening with diesel and fossil fuel. ‘’

Ademilua said that the plan was on how to eradicate these carbon emissions not from day one, adding that it is why it is a transition.

“We are going to be moving using some parameters, using a plan to move away from the fossil fuel towards clean energy access by the year 2060.

“We are privileged to be able to bring together people that put together this document to discuss this, ‘’ he said.

Mr. Mutanga Umar-Sadiq, office of the Vice President in his presentation titled `The Nigeria Energy Transition Plan, the Realities and the Implementation Roadmap”, said that Nigeria was positioned as the first country to develop a detailed energy transition plan.

He said that about 65 percent of the country’s total in-house gas emissions were related to energy consumption and industrial processes.

According to him, within energy consumption, the most actionable sub-sectors are related to power and clean cooking.

“The power sector represents the largest individual source of emission particularly because of generators and diesel.

“As we think about how to engage with the plan, as we think about identifying the opportunities to explore, we are trying to displace the use of diesel and generator set to cleaner sources, ‘’ he said.

Umar-Sadiq said that part of the Nigeria energy transition plan was identifying the pathways, hence in short term achieving universal access to energy by 2030.

“And also in the longer term achieving net zero in 2060 and to do that, we think that we need to deploy solar capacity at an unprecedented scale, ‘’ he said.

On his part, Mr. Jochen Luckscheiter, Country Director, Heinrich Böll Foundation called that the Nigeria Energy Transition Plan was launched in August.

Luckscheiter said that if the plan was implemented, it would make a significant contribution to tackling energy poverty in the country.

“ And help to put Nigeria on a pathway towards its ambition to reach net zero by 2060.

“The Nigerian government was deliberate to launch the ETP online to a global audience of stakeholders as it is clear that it will need the assistance of international development partners.

“And foreign direct investment to make this plan a reality, ‘’ he said.

According to him, the stakeholders meeting hosted by REAN was an important initiative, adding, ”as the saying goes, if you want to go fast, go alone, if you want to go far, go together.” 

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Stakeholders condemn electricity tariff hike, call for reversal

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Stakeholders condemn electricity tariff hike, call for reversal

…Says hike points out evil of privatisation of public utilities***

 Some power experts have condemned the increase in electricity tariff, describing it as arbitrary and, therefore, called for immediate reversal of the increase.

The experts who spoke in Lagos on Thursday said the sudden increase was illegal.

The condemnation has trailed the increase in electricity tariffs by power distribution companies (Discos), with consumer groups and industry experts describing the hike as illegal.

Mr Sina Odugbemi, National Coordinator, WhereIsTheLight, an advocacy group, said, “There’s no noble reason for the perennial and at times secret increase in electricity tariff by the Discos beyond their inhuman exploitation.

“Profit, not service, is the focus of these organisations that always breach all rules of engagement with impunity, and the government is condoning such barefaced robbery and lawlessness.

“This points out the evil of privatisation of public utilities, while still using public funds to sustain the same enterprise sold to few privileged individuals,” he said.

Odugbemi said sustainability should not be by exploitation of customers but by quality service.

He said the overwhelming majority of power consumers were still not metered as promised and directed by the federal government.

He wondered how the Discos would continue to hike tariff when many communities bought transformers, cables and poles themselves.

He said communities still made payments to officials of Discos to fix faults and materials, which is contrary to the guidelines of the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC).

He said despite this, the Discos claimed ownership of materials such as transformers, poles and wires bought by communities, companies or individuals.

“Is that not crazy and open robbery? he queried.

Prof. Yemi Oke, a legal consultant and energy advisor, said, “This is lawlessness of the highest order. So, we’ll continue to arbitrarily increase tariffs without complying with the provisions of the law? What a shame!

“Things are not done like this in any decent clime. We’re reasonably educated and civilised enough to know what goes on around there. It’s a big shame.”

The professor maintained that the tariff hike was annoying, “We’ve been reduced to nothing as a people and businesses. Not even the decency or courtesy of information and adequate notice was given the the general public before the hike.

“Tariff methodologies have statutory bases. NERC has regulations but it is violating its own regulations by failing to ensure effective regulation of this vital sector.

“Part of regulatory efficiency is to set clear rules and guidelines with clear benchmarks.

“A prudent regulator will not encourage or condone clandestine increase in tariffs. It’s all a failure of direction, leadership and regulation.

“It will never improve sector efficiency or bring out those Discos from technical insolvencies.”

Oke added that Nigerians would continue to play ‘smart’ and protest against the anomaly.

“A responsible regulator will be open, firm and decisive in its actions even if tariffs need to be justifiably increased.

“So, Nigerians don’t have a right to know? We’re now so ‘worthless’ that we keep paying more even when service has not improved.

“Instead of increasing the supply net, we’re over-tasking and over-billing the few existing customers. I can’t wait for Nigerians to stand up to their rights as electricity consumers or customers,” he said.

He was emphatic that every increase in electricity tariff must follow a Multi-year Tariff Order (MYTO), adding that the year 2020 was the last order in a bi-annual review to determine tariff increase.

He said the MYTO must be reviewed and authorised tariff increase after following laid-down rules including wide consultation.

“This new one shows they’re determined to continue to take Nigerians for granted,” he said.

Mr Samuel Ilori, the National Coordinator, All Electricity Consumers Protection Forum, said there was no genuine reason ever adduced at any time by the regulatory body before approving tariff increment for Discos.

Ilori said NERC had continuously violated the provisions of the law to satisfy the uncontrollable appetite of Discos for increase under the pretense that it must be competitive and to attract investors.

“In 2016 when the first major increase was done using MYTO schedule 2014, it was glaring that the then minister approved the increase to satisfy the yearning of the Discos.

“Because they said they were not meeting their targets and could not break even, hence the then minister said it was inevitable and dubbed it ‘bitter pill’ Nigerians must swallow even though its approval was in violation of section 76(2)(b) of electric power sector reforms Act, 2005.

“I will advise the government not to renew the almost expired 10 years performance agreement of November 3rd, 2013 signed with the Discos by the President Goodluck Jonathan-led administration.

“Enough of blame games and it’s obvious that after ten years, the current investors cannot take us anywhere, hence the contract must not be renewed,” he said.

Ilori said the impression that there was a 100 percent increase in tariff this new year was wrong, but that there was a systemic fraud pre-approved by the NERC to serve as a minor review window legally provided by the MYTO schedule 2014.

He said the MYTO stipulated that a minor review must be requested by the Discos every six months after fulfilling some conditions.

“The fraud inherent is that, instead of that bi-annual minor review, the NERC has approved beforehand unilaterally a periodic increase from January to December of each year up to 2027 for each Discos without informing the other stakeholders.

“Hence by the documents from NERC, this increment will be witnessed every year from January each year to 2027.

“That’s how insensitive the regulatory body has become and the disdain they have for Nigerian electricity consumers.

“We are prepared to go to court again to challenge the propriety of NERC in granting approval and also demand reversal as well as refund of all illegal charges to consumers on the basis of yearly tabular increase in the order 205/2020 of September 2020,” he added.

However, Mr Adetayo Adegbenle, Executive Director, Power up Nigeria, said the MYTO document clearly stipulated two tariff reviews annually.

“I have said this a million times, instead of protesting and complaining, if it is not going down well with Nigerians, let us approach the National Assembly to get this reviewed.

”Nigerians should also note that the gradual removal of subsidy in electricity tariff has been successfully implemented,” said Adegbenle.

Similarly, the Managing Director, Eko Electricity Distribution Company (EKEDC), Dr Tinuade Sanda, justified the electricity tariff increase within its network.

Sanda explained that the recent hike in tariff only covered consumers under bands A and B (customers who are under the service of 16-20 hours on average), adding that the average increase was in the region of N8.

She said foreign exchange and increase in gas prices also contributed to the tariff increase.

Efforts to speak with officials of NERC proved abortive as they did not answer calls, nor respond to text messages sent to them on the issue.

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Energy Supplies: Berlin replaces Russia with Norway; Putin puts Zircon hypersonic missile into service

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Energy Supplies: Berlin replaces Russia with Norway; Putin puts Zircon hypersonic missile into service

Deputy Government spokesman Wolfgang Büchner on Wednesday in Berlin said the German government says Norway is now the country’s most important energy supplier.

Büchner added that “Norway is a very special partner for Germany’’.

He said the cooperation was a “prime example” of a strategic partnership in many important areas.

“Without the extensive and reliable supplies from Norway, the situation in Germany would be a lot more difficult this winter,” Büchner said.

Germany’s Economy Minister Robert Habeck planned to travel to Norway on Wednesday evening, where he will hold political talks and meet business representatives on Thursday and Friday.

Topics to be discussed on the trip include marine-based wind energy, the role of hydrogen as an energy carrier, the expansion of the infrastructure for renewable energies and the underground storage of CO2. 

In the meantime, Russian President, Vladimir Putin on Wednesday announced that the new Zircon hypersonic missile has been put into service as the country’s war effort flounders in Ukraine.

Putin in a televised video link from the Kremlin to mark the commissioning of the missiles on the Admiral Gorshkov frigate said: “I am sure that such a powerful weapon will allow us to reliably protect Russia from external threats and secure the national interests of our country.’’

The vessel is part of Russia’s Northern Fleet and is to be sent on a lengthy sea voyage to the Atlantic and Indian Oceans to demonstrate Russia’s naval power.

The warship, commissioned in 2018, is the first frigate to be equipped with the new missiles.

The Zircon has a range of more than 500 kilometres and is primarily used for anti-ship missions.

According to Russian figures, because of its extremely high speed, it can accelerate up to 8,000 to 9,000 kilometres per hour and it is practically unstoppable by anti-aircraft defenses

– dpa

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ELECTRICITY: Buhari to Bequeath 22,000 Megawatts Generating Capacity by 2023-Minister

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Ajaokuta Steel Coy to Generate $1.6bn Annually – Buhari

The Minister of Power, Abubakar Aliyu says that President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration will bequeath about 22,000 megawatts installed capacity of electricity by 2023.

He said this at the Presidential Score Card of the Ministry of Power in Abuja.

The programme is an annual event where the various ministries present their achievements to the media and the general public.

Aliyu said the administration had embarked on several transformational projects to bequeath an additional 4,000 megawatts of generating capacity to existing megawatts.

He said as part of the plans to achieve the 4,000 additional megawatts, the 700 megawatts Zungeru Hydro Power Plant would be completed in the first quarter of 2023.

Aliyu said the administration would work toward operationalisation of the 240 megawatts Afam III and 300 megawatts Okpai Phase II among others.

“We will set the country on a stable path for 10,000 megawatts of supplied energy.

“Today we are at 8,000 megawatts with 5,000 megawatts on-grid and above 3,000 megawatts of industrial captive off-grid and we will leave an installed capacity of almost 22,000 megawatts,” he said.

According to the minister, there are ongoing programames with facilities and investments secured at more than three billion dollars to eliminate the gap between transmission capacity and supplied energy.

“The Hydropower component of the Kashimbilla Multipurpose Dam was designed and upgraded from six megawatts to 40 megawatts.

“This was in phase one of the evacuation infrastructure, covering 245km of 132kv transmission lines and three substations, connecting Takum, Wukari, Rafin Kada, Dounga and Yandev in Taraba and Benue States.

“Phase two of the evacuation infrastructure is currently at 45 percent completion level.

“This is covering a 56km extension of the 132 kilovolts (kV) transmission line from Yandev to Makurdi and complete rehabilitation of the Yandev substation.

“Phase two of the evacuation infrastructure will lead to the electrification of 24 host communities, including Zaki-Biam, Anyi, Buruku, Birama, Bibi, and Shibong, among others within Benue State,” he said.

Aliyu said his administration had changed the narrative of the sector from consumption spending on subsidies to real infrastructure spending.

He said a total of 105 Power Transformer projects were completed during the period 2015 to 2022, with a capacity of 6,216 Mega Volt Ampere (MVA) to the grid.

“This is with 73 of the power transformers installed by TCN engineers in substations across the nation.”

Aliyu said, “some of the completed Power Transformer and Substation projects are 150 MVA, 330 and 132 kilovolts (kV) Interbus Power Transformer at Ughelli, Delta IV Transmission Substation”.

“Also, there are 150MVA, 330 and 132kV Power Transformer at Ayade Transmission Substation, 2x150MVA 330 and 132 and 33kV Substation at Lafia, Nasarawa State.

“There is also the 2x60MVA 132 and 33kV Dawaki/Gwarinpa Substation which was recently completed in November 2022 under the Abuja Feeding Scheme.

“Others are 2x60MVA 132 and 33kV Gagarawa Substation, 2x60MVA 132 and 33kV Substation at Adiabor, 2x30MVA 132 and 33kV Yelwa Yauri, 1x30MVA 132 and 33kV Ilashe Substation, 1x40MVA 132 and 33kV Substation at Bichi.”

The minister also said that a number of substations and bay extensions were being completed and expected to be inaugurated by quarters one and two of 2023.

The substations according to him are, 2x150MVA, 330/132/33kV and 2x60MVA 132/33kV Substation in Akure, 2x150MVA 330/132/33kV Substation at New Apo, under the Abuja Feeding Scheme among others.

While still listing the giant strides of the current administration, the minister said about 900km of reconductoring and construction of new transmission lines was completed during the period between 2015 and 2022.

He also said some transmission line projects were almost completed and expected to be commissioned by quarters one and two of 2023.

Some of the line projects according to the minister are the “Kaduna-Jos Double Circuit Transmission Line and the Benin – Ajaokuta 330kV Single Circuit Turn In Turn Out on Azura Ihovbor Transmission Line.”

Aliyu further said there were other critical ongoing projects under the Nigeria Electricity Grid Maintenance, Expansion & Rehabilitation Programme.

He said the projects were being financed by multilateral agencies like World Bank, Africa Development Bank (AfDB) among others and valued at about two billion dollars.

He also said a review of the Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry (NESI) showed that it had done better than what it inherited from previous administrations.

“In 2021, the Quarter two record growth rate of five percent by the Nigerian Economy, as recorded by the Nigerian Bureau of Statistics (NBS) had a large contribution from the power sector with a 78 percent Year-on-Year growth.

“In the first half of 2022, the NESI recorded its highest revenue in eight years at N393 billion.

“In the recent October billing cycle, the sector recorded a new milestone with the highest ever collections in history at N74 billion,” he said.

The minister said the ministry was not unmindful of the lower-income citizens, who did not always receive adequate electricity.

He said the ministry would continue to protect lower-income earners by maintaining subsidies for lower tariff bands while allowing those with adequate power to pay relatively higher prices.

According to him, tariff shortfalls had been reduced by more than 80 percent, while the ministry is on the path to having a sustainable market that can pay for itself.

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