Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu has expressed the willingness of the state government to support the Federal Government with actualizing its rural electrification project in Ariaria market.
Ikpeazu made this known when officials of the Rural Electrification Agency (REA) of Nigeria paid him a visit at Abia Government Lodge in Aba.
The governor said that steady power supply is an important resource required to drive economic growth in the state and the nation.
He said that the state government would support the Federal Government’s efforts to ensure that the project was a huge success.
Earlier, Mrs. Damilola Ogunbiyi, the Managing Director of the agency, said that the agency was in Aba to provide energy solutions to the power challenges of Ariaria market.
Ogunbiyi said that the agency had identified the energy needs of Ariaria market and disclosed that the power supply project would be run with a sustainable natural gas solution.
She said that a few thousand shops in Ariaria market would be used for a test run of the steady electric power supply project.
Meanwhile, Russian State Nuclear Energy Corporation, Rosatom, has once again advised Nigeria to adopt a sustainable energy mix approach to its power system if it must achieve energy stability like Russia.
Rosatom’s Regional Vice-President of Sub-Saharan Africa, Viktor Polikarpov, at an annual powering Africa investors’ summit held in Abuja, recently, shared his country’s energy sector best practices with participants of the event, insisting that the optimum energy mix for Nigeria was the way forward.
Also, during a panel discussion on the optimum future energy mix for Nigeria, experts from across the globe discussed various options to close the country’s current power deficit.
Recent estimates from the International Energy Agency indicate that more than 115 million people in Nigeria still rely on traditional biomass and waste as their main sources of energy.
With the country currently spending roughly between USD 14 billion on off grid diesel generation, it is abundantly clear that the country needs to diversify its mix.
During the discussion Rosatom Regional Vice-President of Sub-Saharan Africa, Polikarpov, noted that for Nigeria to achieve a balanced energy mix, the country should consider all available sustainable sources of energy.
He said,“Solar, wind, hydro and nuclear power complement and reinforce each other to form a green square, which will essentially become the base for the world’s future carbon-free energy mix.
One needs to consider the so called energy trilemma when planning an energy mix, this entails balancing economics, security of supply and environmental impact.
“Only nuclear energy is capable of ticking all three boxes and is able to balance any energy mix. In order to combat the current energy challenge faced by Nigeria, the region needs access to affordable and clean base load power,”
Polikarpov also added that investing in nuclear projects stimulates national and regional cash flows toward the budget that often surpasses direct investments by a significant margin.
Construction of NPPs also creates demand for thousands of locally sourced skilled labour, such as; welders, pipe fitters, masons, carpenters, millwrights, sheet metal workers, electricians, iron workers, heavy equipment operators and insulators, as well as engineers, project managers and construction supervisors.