President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday pledged Nigeria’s determination to achieve the vision of 30 gigawatts of energy by the year 2030.
Buhari made the pledge at a discussion panel on Just Energy Transition at the ongoing US-Africa Leaders Summit in Washington, USA.
He used the opportunity to outline the comprehensive Energy Transition Plan unfolded by his administration in response to the issues associated with climate change.
According to him, as part of the National Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Policy, Nigeria set the vision 30:30:30 which aims at achieving 30GW of electricity by 2030 with renewable energy contributing 30 per cent of the energy mix.
“In 2021, Nigeria became the first African country to develop a detailed Energy Transition Plan to tackle both energy poverty and climate change, and deliver Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 7 by 2030 and net-zero by 2060.
“Our Federal Executive Council approved the plan earlier this year and adopted it as a national policy.”
Buhari told the summit that Nigeria was intending to eliminate the use of petrol/diesel generators by 2060 and therefore needed to deploy renewables, particularly solar, at an unprecedented scale.
“For instance, the Energy Transition Plan requires that 5.3 GW of Solar be deployed annually until 2060 to achieve our targets.”
The President stressed that the Nigerian government had embarked on several reforms, one of the best in Africa, on mini-grid regulations as well as the integration of renewable energy into the national grid.
He disclosed some of the reforms which have positively impacted the energy sector in Nigeria.
“Our aggressive power sector reforms have resulted in cost-reflective tariffs in the power sector for the first time since privatization,” Buhari said.
“Under the Nigeria Electrification Project, over four million people have been impacted through solar mini-grids and solar stand-alone systems. With respect to hydro, the Zungeru hydropower project is nearing completion and will add 700MW in capacity to the grid.”
The Nigerian leader, however, called for considerable financial and technical support to achieve the desired results
Buhari added that, “For instance, our analysis shows that delivering the Energy Transition Plan requires US$1.9 trillion spending up to 2060, including US$410 billion above business-as-usual spending.
“This additional financing requirement translates to a US$10 billion investment needed per annum. Between 2000 and 2020, just US$3 billion per year was invested in renewable energy in the whole of Africa.
“Consequently, the US$10 billion per year target of our Energy Transition Plan represents a significant scaling of current investment flows and we need support from the US to mobilise the needed resources.
“It is important to note that for African countries, the cost of finance and perceived investment risk remains significantly higher than for developed economies despite vast improvements in stability and governance,’’ he said.
For our clean energy market to scale up, he said Nigeria and more broadly Africa needed concessional, low-interest capital-led investments.
Buhari added that, “Furthermore, we believe that the Nigeria Energy Transition Plan and the net-zero compliant investment pipeline we have developed is prime for a just energy transition partnership like the one offered to South Africa and, more recently, Indonesia.
“Nigeria too seeks support from the US to be included in the G7’s Climate Partnerships List for the co-creation of a Just Energy Transition Partnership.”
President Buhari also called on US businessmen and the global community to tap “into the innovation and potential returns in our enormous market which is yet to be fully optimized.”
Earlier, the US Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, said earlier in the year, in South Africa, he had an opportunity to set out President Biden’s new Strategy for Sub-Saharan Africa.
“It’s based on a simple idea: we can’t achieve any of our shared priorities – tackle any of our biggest challenges – unless we do it together as equal partners.
“That’s true of every major issue we face today, and it’s particularly true of climate change. So here’s how we’re addressing this crisis together,” he said.
He said Nigeria had set bold targets and robust regulations for methane reductions – the first country in Africa to do so – which could reduce air pollutants by a third and avert tens of thousands of deaths.
“Equatorial Guinea just raised its commitment to cut emissions by 35 per cent by 2030.” (NAN)