…Generation to expand by over 11,000MW
Lagos — Nigeria is to add six coal and nine gas power generating plants to its 23 existing plants by 2037, SweetcrudeReports findings have shown.
This makes it a total of 15 power plants expected to come on stream by 2037.
An additional 15 plants would see the country’s struggling power generation leap by 11,163 megawatts, MW.
Ashaka, one of the coal plants, would come on stream by 2034, and is expected to add 64MW to the national grid.
Other coal plants – Ramos expected in 2034 will add 1000MW; Ashaka/TPGL to come on stream in 2034, will add 500MW; Nasarawa coal power (2034) will add 500MW; Benue coal power expected in 2037, will add 1200MW; while Enugu coal power to come on stream by 2037, will add 2,000MW to the grid.
The nine gas plants in the pipeline include Total/NNPC Obite plant expected in 2031 and which will add 420MW to the grid. Anambra state IPP by 2031 will add 528MW, Knox’s 501MW will add 501MW by 2031.
Other gas plants: Delta State IPP expected by 2032 will generate 500MW, Benco’s 700MW plant will come on stream by 2033, Kaduna (NNPC power business plan), 900MW is expected to come on stream by 2034, Fortune Electric’s two plants are expected by 2035 and would add a total of 1,000MW to the grid, while Gwagwalada’s CCGT’s 1,350MW is expected by 2037.
Nigeria’s current power generation hovers around 5,000MW with 2,000MW stranded due to inadequate transmission capacity.
Experts have said Nigeria needs nothing less than 30,000MW per day to cater for its population of about 200 million currently.
A recent report had chronicled how the country lost a whopping 44, 068MW power generation in 2020 due to unavailability of gas, transmission bottlenecks, and distribution constraints.
Rainfall level also determines power generation capacity of the country’s two hydro plants.
Although Nigeria is majorly an oil-producing country with gas plants taking centre stage, its oldest nonrenewable source of energy is coal.
However, the country had not made the best use of coal in power generation in decades, especially since the pre-civil war era. The country had switched to gas and hydro post-civil war with maximum consumption around 1972, and has been decreasing steadily since then.
Utilisation in the power generation industry was predominant between 1928 and 1939. Nigeria’s coal industry suffered a blow in the 1950s when oil was discovered. Up until this point, the Nigerian Railway Corporation was the largest consumer of coal in the country.
However, Nigeria still holds large coal reserves, estimated to be at least 2 billion metric tons.
The federal government’s diversification of power generation prospects to include coal is expected to open up the country’s ailing power sector to prospective coal investors, and would, in turn, boost the local coal industry.
The power sector lost a cumulative N645.15 billion in 2020 as a result of gas constraints in generating 44,068MW, so, coal generating plants might be a relief to the generation sector.
The Transmission Company of Nigeria, TCN, in its transmission expansion plan said the main reasons for shortage of generation are outages of generation units and the unavailability of gas for power generation.
The gas supply is very often interrupted because of sabotage of pipeline network, it said.