Sustainability in Nigeria

Nigeria has a tropical climate; hot and humid in the coastal area of south, but increasingly dry towards the north. Ezugwu (2015) identified the available renewable energy sources in Nigeria to be solar, hydropower, biomass and wind. Solar energy is freely available in all parts of the country which favors the use of its radiation for energy in buildings

Nigeria has an abundance of various renewable energy resources of which solar, wind, biomass and small hydro power (SHP) are the most present.

The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) is committed to stimulating investment in renewable energy generation in Nigeria. With a vast and mostly untapped potential in renewable energy resources, the Commission has set a target of generating a minimum of 2,000MW of electricity from renewables by the year 2020.

Despite the necessity to reduce carbon footprint in the country and continent, for many businesses in Nigeria, the greater concern is how to generate adequate electricity to sustain business operations and remain a going concern. Considering the continent’s overall contribution to global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions is already low at less than four per cent, deploying renewable energy is however necessitated by the need to reduce energy cost at a time diesel prices are bringing businesses to their knees.

Energy costs are a major contributor to the decades-high inflation numbers showing up, as prices for all manner of goods and services march higher. In Nigeria especially, diesel is considered an economic fuel, going by how embedded it is in transportation and power for homes and industrial firms.

The report entitled, “Powering Nigeria: How solar energy can become a sustainable electricity alternative,” showed that despite the privatization of Nigeria’s electricity industry, the country still has one of the lowest electrification rates in the world as 43 percent of its population have no access to grid electricity, an indication “that 85 million Nigerians are not connected to – and cannot receive electricity from – the Nigerian transmission grid.”

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