The world is moving towards use of clean energy technologies, even as the federal government has called on all Nigerians to embrace and support deployment of clean energy innovations and solutions across various sectors of Nigerian economy.
The minister of Science, Technology and Innovation, senator Adeleke Mamora, who made the call, at the Project Inception Workshop of the Global CleanTech Innovation Programme (GCIP), on Thursday, in Lagos, said innovative clean tech entrepreneurship plays a key role in climate action.
Mamora, who was represented by the director, Department of Environmental Sciences and Technology, Federal Ministry of Science and Technology, Dr. Peter Ekweozoh, disclosed that the Global Environment Facility (GEF) has partnered with the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) to systematically address the challenges of deploying CleanTech innovations, through the GCIP.
To key into the project, the minister said a Project Steering Committee was set up at the ministry, adding that members of the committee were selected from the pool of experts in the public and private sectors of the economy. “They are expected to make very important contribution to the development of our dear nation through this laudable project,” he added.
Mamora however commended the efforts of UNIDO for mobilising resources to pilot this project; GEF for providing the seed financial resources; the department of environmental sciences and technology of Federal Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (FMSTI) for conceptualising the Nigerian CleanTech Innovation Programme (NC-TIP) that provided the national platform for this partnership with the GCIP being piloted by UNIDO and the Rural Electrification Agency (REA) and Co-creation Hub for providing niche technical services within the project.
He said the GCIP-Nigeria is to implement the project over the next three years in three components. “Component one is to be coordinated by the private sector represented by the Co-creation Hub; component two is being implemented by the public sector driven by the FMSTI and REA, while UNIDO is in charge of component three,” the minister explained.
With Nigeria’s population projected to hit 264 million by 2030, the director, Department of Environmental Sciences and Technology, federal ministry of science and technology, Dr. Peter Ekweozoh, said National and Subnational governments have put in place policies, programmes, projects and strategies to enable Nigeria attain Sustainable Development Goals by 2030, utilizing the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) to create mass employment and wealth.
Despite all these, Ekweozoh said the Nigerian MSME space still does not have adequate technology innovation platforms specifically tailored for and targeted to clean energy technologies, start-ups and SMEs, adding that there is dearth of financial schemes, poor access to available funds for clean energy investment projects and limited government financial incentives to support industrial enterprises in the uptake of innovation outputs in clean energy technologies.
However, the director disclosed that NC-TIP has provided the desired national platform for accelerated growth of the Nigeria innovation ecosystem and working with GCIP-Nigeria for the next three years, NC-TIP will strengthen the enabling environment and harness the requisite financial and technology support from development partners, the public and private sectors including multilateral agencies in order to provide the elusive economic lifeline to innovators and start-ups in MSME sector.
On his part, the chief executive officer, Co-creation Hub, Bosun Tijani said the GEF funded UNIDO-GCIP is built around adopting an innovative approach to enabling the CleanTech ecosystem by harmonising the contributions of critical actors while fostering an attractive business environment for the startups, SMEs and innovators.
With GCIP Nigeria, focusing on CleanTech start-ups and SMEs working on exciting and disruptive solutions, junior professional officer, Department of Energy Climate Technology and Innovation Division, Luca Longo, says the project will provide added value for domestic economic and industrial development by bridging the gap between CleanTech Innovators and investors, paving the way for new business opportunities.
NASENI and REA To Deploy Renewable Technologies for Rural Areas in Nigeria
The Executive Vice Chairman/CEO of the National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure (NASENI), Mr Khalil Halilu and the Managing Director/CEO of the Rural Electrification Agency (REA), Mr. Ahmad Salihijo Ahmad have agreed to work together to deploy NASENI Solar resources and other renewable energy technologies, to increase electricity supply to Nigeria’s rural areas.
This commitment was the outcome of discussions between the two chief executives in Abuja recently when the EVC/CEO of NASENI visited the Rural Electrification Agency (REA) office as part of his efforts to engage with stakeholders to promote the adoption of NASENI’s technologies.
Mr. Halilu, who assumed office two weeks ago as NASENI’s chief executive, said, “The focus is to hit the ground running by nurturing effective collaborations with the right stakeholders who will assist NASENI to fulfil its mandate of providing the science and engineering infrastructure base for Nigeria’s businesses and economy to thrive.”
According to him, “The strategy, going forward, for NASENI includes knocking on the doors of potential end-users of the Agency’s technology and engineering products, making off-take of our Research & Development (R&D) easy, while also bringing the direct impact of our work to bear on the Nigerian economy.”
The two chief executives pledged to work together to bring down the cost of solar power installation in rural areas, through efforts such as increased local production of solar panels by NASENI. The overall goal, according to the REA MD, Ahmad Salihijo, is to facilitate the Federal Government’s ambition to achieve the electrification of Nigeria’s rural areas in record time.
Schneider Electric Seeks Adoption of Electric Vehicles In Nigeria as a Solution to Fuel Challenges
As the demand for sustainable transportation solutions rises, Schneider Electric has emphasized the need for adoption of electric vehicles (EV) solutions to alleviate future fuel challenges.
The country president, Schneider Electric, Ajibola Akindele disclosed this while showcasing the global energy management and automation giant’s cutting-edge range of Electrical Vehicle (EV) chargers at the West African Automotive Show, Landmark, Lagos, Nigeria.
Stating that there is growing interest for electric vehicles, Akindele, highlighted Schneider Electric’s commitment towards providing a reliable and sustainable solution for Nigeria’s transportation sector, “Fuel scarcity remains a significant concern in Nigeria and the cost is now an added challenge.
“Schneider Electric recognizes electric vehicles as a sustainable and efficient solution to address these issues, now and in the future. By shifting towards electric vehicles, Nigeria can reduce its dependency on fossil fuels and decrease carbon emissions. Schneider Electric is committed to supporting this transition by providing reliable and scalable EV charging solutions.”
Speaking on the exhibition success and visitor’s reactions, marketing communications manager, Omobolanle Omotayo, said “The exhibition witnessed enlightening engagements with electric vehicle enthusiasts and industry professionals, which provided valuable insights on the growing EV market in West Africa and the need for a robust charging infrastructure to support the transition to electric vehicles effectively.”
Schneider Electric commended the efforts of the Lagos State Government in promoting the importation of automotive electrical vehicles(buses) into Nigeria. This forward-thinking initiative demonstrates the government’s commitment to cleaner mobility and paves the way for a greener transportation ecosystem.
The EV charger product manager, Grace Olorunsola highlighted Schneider Electric’s diverse portfolio of EV charging solutions, “EV Charging solutions caters to the needs of both residential (EVlink Home) and commercial requirements (EVlink Pro AC). The charging solutions offer convenience and flexibility of use, ensuring electric vehicle owners can charge their vehicles efficiently without hassle.
“By implementing Schneider Electric’s EV charging solutions, Nigeria can seamlessly transition to electric vehicles and provide a sustainable and reliable transportation system for its citizens,” she added.
Schneider Electric drives digital transformation by integrating world-leading process and energy technologies, endpoint to cloud connecting products, controls, software, and services, across the entire lifecycle, enabling integrated company management, for homes, buildings, data centres, infrastructure, and industries.
Why WATT Renewable Is Investing $100m for solar-powered telecoms towers in Nigeria
WATT Renewable, a private independent clean energy producer is to raise as much as $100 million by the end of 2024 to expand its business of providing solar power, mainly to telecommunications towers in Nigeria.
Sherisse Alexander, chief investment officer of WATT Renewable stated that the company has installed 12 megawatts of generation capacity at about 160 sites and has a pipeline of projects 10 times that size.
According to Alexander, the Canadian company would prefer a major investor to take a stake but will finance projects individually if need be.
“What we are looking at is a corporate raise. WATT is talking to companies that are already involved in the energy industry that have an understanding of renewable energy and specifically the African market,” she said.
WATT is one of a number of energy startups trying to provide power solutions in Africa, where about 600 million people, or half the population, have no access to electricity. Businesses across the continent are offering services ranging from mini-grids to small hydro plants to reach areas that aren’t connected to national grids.
One of its main customers is Pan African Towers Ltd., a Nigerian provider of masts. In addition to telecommunications, WATT has also focused on financial institutions and some commercial and industrial companies.