By Ayobami Adedinni
A renewable energy expert and Chief Executive Officer, Community Energy Social Enterprise, Dr Patrick Tolani has said although the Nigerian Alternative Energy sector is making incremental progress, it is rather at a slow pace.
Renewable energy is energy that is collected from renewable resources, which are naturally replenished on a human timescale, such as sunlight, wind, rain, tides, waves, and geothermal heat.
It is one of the means of tackling the global challenges of climate change. It is now being seen by many people around the world as a cost-effective development solution for developed countries and a developing country such as Nigeria.
Speaking in an exclusive chat with PETROLGASREPORT, he said there are serious issues that need urgent attention in order to reverse the current trend.
According to him, there is a need for more investments to guarantee energy security in Nigeria.
In his words, “the alternative energy programme in Nigeria is making incremental progress; but the pace is rather too slow.
“The occurrence of the last few weeks whereby the entire country was thrown into darkness underscores the fact that we are still too fragile in energy supply.
“The blackout experienced throughout the country was because of a fire incident which engulfed a segment of the Escravos-Lagos Pipeline System (ELPS).
“All those should leave any right-thinking person worried about energy security in Nigeria. When we juxtapose that with the self-generation devices that we have in Nigeria from heavy industrial generation to what is called “I pass my neighbor generators” you would agree with me that there are serious issues that need urgent attention in order to reverse the current trend,” he said.
Speaking further, he said the country has abundant resources hence the need for each part of the country to use the natural resources to power its area.
“There is no area in Nigeria without a natural resource that can be used to power the area.
“The Northern part of Nigeria will benefit immensely from the use of solar PV given the prospect of sunlight in the North. The South-South can still benefit from gas and other renewable energy resources that the region can boast of.
“Other parts of Nigeria, for instance, the North Central part of the country have great Hydro Power potentials. I believe we are more than ready to utilize these resources and get ourselves out of energy poverty,” he added.
He therefore said the lack of bankable ideas is a major hindrance to the sector urging developers to show capacity adding that engaging with multiple stakeholders is needed to operate as Mini-Grid operators.