17 May 2016, Lagos — TRANSMISSION Company of Nigeria, TCN, and the Niger Delta Power Holding Company, NDPHC, are working on an agreement by which the National Integrated Power Plants, NIPPs would provide about 265 megawatts, MW, spinning reservesto cushion the effects of incessant attacks on gas pipelines.
The agreement is aimed at facilitating grid responsiveness during swings and disturbances on the transmission network, the General Manager, Communication and Public Relations, NDPHC, Mr. Yakubu Lawal said.
He explained that the provision of spinning reserve and other ancillary services are being practiced all over the world and Nigeria now largely relies on the NIPPs to provide the service.
According to Lawal, the NPDHC has over 2,000MW of generation capacity readily available for deployment as soon as vandalised gas processing projects are completed by the associated nominated gas suppliers thus presenting the best opportunity for rapid improvement of the power supply.
“In the area of power generation, eight of the 10 power plants in the NIPP portfolio, along with associated gas transmission metering/receiving infrastructure projects to support commercial operation have been commissioned and connected to the national grid contributing over 2000MW of energy daily.
“While it is a fact that power generation is often disrupted by acts of vandalism on gas pipelines and transmission lines, the NDPHC does not offer such incidences as excuses.
“The NDPHC has continued to operate these power plants in the interest of the Nigerian economy, despite undesirable security challenges and an accumulated debt of over N94billion owed it by the electricity market, that’s definitely more than a tangible contribution to the nation’s supply of electricity,” he said.
He also said that many of the NIPP power plants on the national grid also provide ancillary services in support of system operations, a contribution critical for stabilising the national grid.”It is noteworthy that the System Operator heavily depends on the NIPP plants for the provision of these critical services.”
He identified the completed NIPPs to include the 750MW Olorunsogo II, 450MW Sapele, 434MW Geregu II, 450MW Omotosho II, 450MW Ihovbor, 450MW Alaoji, 563MW Calabar and 225MW Gbarain.
Imminently completed ones include 225MW Omoku, 338MW, Egbema and 530MW Alaoji II. Power infrastructure “The NDPHC assets are truly the backbone of the nation’s power infrastructure. The completed power plants have been operated with private sector orientation and supported by Long Term Service Agreements (LTSA) in line with international best practice.
“Given the transmission and gas challenges, the profitability of the plants is constrained but these are short term developmental challenges, which the NDPHC is working to mitigate by divestment to the private sector either as privatised entities or under practical Operations and Maintenance (O&M) contracts.
“Despite the inability of some IOCs to deliver gas to NIPP plants on schedule, the management has been proactive in securing alternative gas from Accugas Ltd which clearly is outside the aggregation framework,” adding that projects upgrade may have been responsible for low shedding in some areas under the Eko zone.
*Sebastine Obasi – Vanguard