Accelerating the Energy Transition in Nigeria

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The current global goal is to attain a sustainable energy future. We must collectively transition from fossil-based to zero-emission energy sources to do this.

Doing this would limit the impact our energy activities have on the climate. Several nations have signed international Climate Preservation agreements like the Paris Accord of 2015 and The Net-Zero Carbon Emission goal, aiming to decarbonize their industries by 2050/2060.

Fortunately, Nigeria, the largest oil producer in Africa, has also agreed to join the world in attaining these goals. Though there is a level of awareness about the need for decarbonization, Nigeria seems unprepared.

Some Nigerians are reluctant to transition because they believe it could increase unemployment and a decline in Nigeria’s Economy. Nigeria is currently the largest producer and exporter of oil in Africa.

Oil remains a huge source of foreign exchange earnings for the country. Many believe that the energy transition could negatively impact the country’s main source of income. Another challenge limiting the energy transition in the country is affordability.

Renewable energy solutions are often expensive, and many Nigerians cannot afford the switch from cheaper fossil fuel generators for their energy needs.

Energy management is also a problem of energy transition in Nigeria; this includes the product, energy efficiency, energy cost, and technological participation from distribution to consumption. There is a need for proper monitoring and managing of each product. The ratio of skilled companies in the energy transition is very low compared to Nigeria’s population.

In this situation, the demand for renewable energy is high while the supply is low. This may lead to citizens purchasing substandard products and ill skilled technicians doing the job leading to adverse effects.

The government can play a huge role in increasing the energy transition in Nigeria. One way would be by creating an enabling environment for investment in the renewable sector and developing frameworks that ensure a healthy energy mix of clean energy and cleaner fossil sources such as gas.

The government can also enact policies that make it cheaper for citizens to adopt clean energy solutions. Subsidies, net-metering and tax rebates can help reduce the costs of renewable energy solutions.

Sensitization is also very key. Both the government and private sectors have huge roles to play. There is a need for increased awareness of the importance and benefits of the energy transition.

Busayo Sunday-Omofe

The Electricity Hub

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