Though the Federal Government is spearheading the establishment of the new power stations, it is understood from reliable sources that it will not own them outright, in line with the ongoing power sector reform.
The Federal Government is to build three coal-fired power stations in Enugu, Kogi and Gombe states with the capacity to generate 3000Megawatts, so as to diversify electricity sources in the country.Minister of Power, Professor Bart Nnaji, disclosed the Federal Government’s new energy mix this afternoon at a press conference organized by the Federal Ministry of Information to mark the first 100 days of the president Goodluck Jonathan administration.
“Not only does Nigeria have huge coal deposits in Enugu, Kogi, Gombe and Benue states”, said the minister, “but we have the world’s cleanest type of coal”.
The Federal Government will have about 25 per cent with state governments and private sector companies owning the rest of the coal-fired companies which may take about four years to complete.
On whether the Ministry of Power will revive the Oji River coal-powered generating station in Enugu State which was destroyed during the Nigerian Civil War of 1967 to 1970, Professor Nnaji said that the dilapidated station was obsolete and produced a mere 35MW “which might have been appropriate for an era when many communities did not have electricity and when neither the population nor the economic activity in the country was as high as it is today”.
Professor Nnaji rejected the suggestion that Nigeria could face criticism from the international community over coal-powered stations because of the environmental implications.
Countries like the United States and South Africa, he noted, produce more electricity from coal than from any other source.
He stated:“We do not expect the international community, including environmental groups, to display double standards so glaringly against us.
“In any case, ours is clean coal, far better than what obtains in many parts of the world, especially Europe”.
Coal from Enugu and Benue in particular has low ash and is of high calorific value while that of Kogi is friable, or easy to use to form smokeless coal bricket.
This report is in order. It should not be all talk as usual. With people like Prof Nnaji and Nze Akachukwu Nwankpo piloting the new Energy Reform policy of the GEJ administration, it appears that we will soon have some light in our perpetual dark tunnel. With 3,000 mw expected generation capacity, it would equal our present total daily out put and therefore a needed addition. Problem seems however to be with transmission and distribution. With the slow unbundling actions targeted at the woeful PHCN, it would seem to take a greater concerted effort to achieve power success than the present officers can muster. Without improved power delivery to Nigerians, the GEJ will be seen as ineffective and unsuccessful. Loads of luck to Prof Nnaji and co.
Whatever source of energy the FG of Nigeria is meditating on, it should certainly not be the one that appears in that picture above: the coal source of energy. That source of energy is gradually phasing out. Germany will phase that source of energy out in 2015. Why does the US govenment prefer an outdated source of energy for Nigeria? Why should the US government think for us, Nigerians? A new mode of coloniasm!
That government (USA) and the financial institutions sold a “disciplined” form of democracy to Africa that serves their own interest. A type of democracy that is barely procedural and insists on neoliberal reforms. All the African states,which enforced those reforms, find it difficult to furnish its citizens with the basic amenities. Besides, such states were forced to abandon any state-sponsored investments for their citizen. Now, it is again an outmoded source of energy.
In view of the Japanese catastrophe, the German Parliament has definitively given 2015 as the deadline for phasing the coal enerny out.
There are current, non-poluting and non-dangerous sources of energy, sources of energy that are environment-friendly. There is, first, the Wind-generated source. EU and USA have embraced it. The second source is very suitable for Nigeria and Africa: the Sun. Solar Energy. Both sources – wind and the sun – are in abundant supply in Nigeria and Africa. Let the FG invest in these two sources rather than the outdated coal energy that US and EU are abandoning. A Stich in time saves nine. Thanks
It does not matter what type of energy source we develop in Nigeria. We need power to power our industrial development and provide jobs for our teaming population. I am 70% sure that Prof. Bart Nnaji will deliver. Wind and Solar energy are still at the infancy stage and we need to capitalize on our abundant natural resources using well developed technology to minimize cost of construction and operation.
Engr. Joseph Ogundu
West Bloomfield, Michigan
The main drawback for coal fired power plants is polution.
All the countries that have built nuclear power plant even including Japan knew the risks but still went ahead to build them to power their economies.
China still continues to build coal fired plants,going deep deep into earth’s bowel to mine the coal even at great risks to their miners!
Nigerian coal I can tell you as geologist is probably the cleanest and energy ladden in the world.
We should not only power our power plants with the coal but also massively export to China and other countries interested in buying.
There more efficiient coal fired power technology around the world now.South Africa with all its power is even building more coal fired power plants.
Please enough talk.Give us power even if you have to use cowdung!
We need to run our industies and keep the youth engaged or we are gradually turning them to Criminals..