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Monday, July 22, 2024

Joy As Phase 1 Of Ariaria Power Project Takes Off



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Traders at the Ariaria market in Aba, Abia state expect constant power supply in the market and clusters around it following the inauguration of the first phase of the Ariaria Independent Power Project.

The project undertaken by the Rural Electrification Agency (REA), under the Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing, was geared towards addressing power supply challenges in the area. REA’s managing director, Damilola Ogunbiyi, explained the agency’s intention to provide constant electricity to about 500,000 small businesses within 350 economic clusters in the country in the next five years.

According to him, the first phase of the project, had energised 4,000 shops, noting that the shops were presently receiving constant, cleaned metered electricity with the remaining shops expected to be connected this year.

“The project is in fulfillment of a commitment made by the present administration to increase energy access through sustainable and renewable energy solutions. To date, almost 10,000 shops have been electrified as part of the initiative within Ariaira Market, Sabon Gari Market in Kano, Sura Market Complex, Iponri Market in Lagos and Isikan Market in Ondo.

“The project is funded, constructed and operated, by Ariaria Market Energy Solutions Limited (AMES) and consists of an independent gas-fired power plant, extensive distribution network and metering systems for each shop.

“The pre-paid meters mean that there is no more estimated billing and the traders only pay for what they consume. We, therefore, encourage energy conservation and payment of power supply.

“It is very clear that, this administration is committed to ensuring that Nigerian businesses are given the ability to thrive and thus boost economic activity in a conducive and healthy environment.

Ubani Ngaginieme, managing director, Ariaria Market Energy Solutions Limited (AMES) explained that the firm was set out to show and prove that when government and private enterprise come together with strong will and alignment, great and wonderful things, as we are witnessing today, can and will happen

He explained that the federal government’s Energising Economies Initiative was responsible for their ability in carrying out the project, stressing that government had created the enabling environment for businesses to thrive.

Ubani explained that AMES, deployed modular, environment-friendly natural-gas-fuelled gas generators to power Ariaria Market, but noted that its future deployments as they ramp up towards 10MW of power and connection of more than 37,000 shops – beyond the presently connected 4,000 shops – would include other renewable energy sources like solar and others.

“What AMES has invested in, and built from ground up, is a complete captive power ecosystem that includes, proper customer enumeration/sensitisation, all shops metered, a robust distribution network with redundancy, and a modular environment-friendly, natural gas-fuelled power stacks”.

With this AMES setup in place, Ubani said AMES had been able to reduce the Ariaria Marketemissions profile, by more than 85 percent, reduced the ambient noise in the market, by over 50 percent, made uninterrupted power available to sections of the market since October 2017 and provided and sustained jobs to over 100 Nigerians.

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