15 April 2016, Sweetcrude, Abuja – The United Nations Industrial Development Organization(UNIDO) has stated its commitment to help the government of Nigeria achieve Inclusive and Sustainable Industrial Development through the development of small hydro power projects across many states.
To this extent, the agency in collaboration with the Energy Commission of Nigeria and the Federal Ministry of Environment yesterday organized a one-day seminar on the development of Small Hydro Power (SHP) Projects in Nigeria.
The seminar, which was facilitated by experts in SHP projects planning and development, brought together key stakeholders in the energy sector, including the United Nations agencies and multilateral organizations, to identify promoters and investors for the final development of SHP sites across the country with a cumulative capacity of generating at least 3.1MW of electricity.
The project falls under the framework of UNIDO/Global Environmental Facility (GEF-5) project, “Scaling Up Small Hydro Power in Nigeria.”
Speaking during the seminar in Abuja on Thursday, the Officer in Charge of UNIDO Regional Office, Nigeria, Dr. Chuma Ezedinma, said the Small Hydro Power Project in Nigeria is part of UNIDO’s wider renewable and rural energy effort aimed at promoting Inclusive and Sustainable Industrial Development (ISID) globally.
He added that clean and sustainable energy is an integral part of UNIDO’s overall mandate to support efforts geared towards productive activities which will ultimately lead to creating shared prosperity, advancing economic competitiveness and safeguarding the environment.
According to him, “The seminar was designed for interested State Governments, key decision makers at the Federal level as well as private sector who are willing to invest in the development of SHP in Nigeria.
At the end of the seminar, stakeholders are now aware of the projects on scaling up SHP development in Nigeria, the list of potential SHP sites with cumulative capacity of up to 3.1 MW identified for development, and the potential investors (public and private) who are ready to invest in the SHP sites identified.
“The development of SHP in Nigeria, especially in rural areas has the potential to support the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals 7 and 9 by ensuring access to affordable, reliable and sustainable energy for all and to build resilient infrastructure,” Ezedinma explained.
He announced that UNIDO, in collaboration with the Federal Government, is currently building human and institutional capacity for the development of Small Hydro Power Projects across the country.
He said, “Already, UNIDO has supported the establishment of a Regional Centre for SHP development (RC-SHP) in Nigeria, in addition to developing local capacity for the fabrication of Small Hydro Power turbines to reduce project cost.
“Over 200 potential SHP sites have been identified across the country while 19 feasibility studies with detailed project reports and bankable documents have been carried out by the RC-SHP. As at today, three SHP Projects have been completed in Taraba, Bauchi and Enugu States, while there are on-going projects in Ogun, Osun and Benue States.”
Over the years, electricity supply in Nigeria has been unreliable and always characterized by frequent shutdowns, load shedding and grid failures. The country’s estimated electricity demand is about 15, 000MW.
On the supply side, Nigeria’s total installed generating capacity is about 10,000 MW while actual electricity generation currently hovers around 4,000 MW.