Nigeria to host West Africa's largest solar farm with 200MW capacity
Over $20 billion worth of solar projects are reportedly under construction or planned around the country.
B&S Power Holding Pte, a Singapore-based renewable energy company, and Sunnyfred Global, a Nigerian investment firm, have announced a collaboration to construct a 200 megawatts (MW) solar farm to be located in Ashama Village in Delta State, Nigeria. The two companies have concluded arrangements with other stakeholders and technical partners to design, develop, finance and construct the large-scale photovoltaic (PV) system, according to a statement released on Thursday.
The solar farm, called the Ashama Solar Photovoltaic Project, will be the largest PV system in West Africa. A statement by Greenplinth Africa – a Pan-African green solutions firm and a strategic partner to the project promoters – said a media chat and project roadmap presentation will take place on February 25, 2021 at the Sheraton Hotel, Lagos.
The event with the theme, "Sustainable and Affordable Energy Access for Communities in Nigeria," will highlight the importance of the project to the host community, Delta State, the nation and the continent in general, according to Greenplinth Africa.
PV systems generate electricity using energy from the sun. Solar energy is a clean and renewable energy source, unlike fossil fuels that emit greenhouse gases (GHGs) that cause global warming and climate change. The Nigerian government plans to have at least 30 per cent of its total electricity supply from renewable sources, majorly solar power, by 2030. Nigerian Vice President Yemi Osinbajo reiterated the government's commitment to this plan last week during the inauguration of a 1.12MW Solar Hybrid Project at the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University in Bauchi.
Nigeria is currently challenged by significant power shortages with about 90 million of the citizens without access to electricity. For those with electricity access, the supply is erratic. According to the Nigerian Electricity System Operator (NESO), the country's current installed capacity is 12,522MW but only one-third of that is delivered. Gas shortages and other technical issues often disrupt even the limited supply.
The Ashama Solar Photovoltaic Project is coming at a time when investment in solar and other renewable and clean power projects by the federal government and private firms is on the rise. Over $20 billion worth of projects are reportedly under construction or planned around the country by government and private firms.
The project roadmap presentation on the 200MW solar PV project in Delta next week will be chaired by Abubakar Sani Sambo, Vice Chancellor of Usmanu Danfodiyo University, Sokoto, and former Director-General of Energy Commission of Nigeria (ECN). The technical partners to the project as well as national and international stakeholders will participate at the event, according to the statement by Greenplinth Africa.
Solar farms, also known as solar power stations, are large-scale solar PV panel installations. They are different from most residential and commercial systems because they are decentralised solar power applications.
The investment will support clean energy and resource-efficient infrastructure projects in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Nigeria needs to tap into its high potential for renewable energy generation to satisfy the country’s needs.
The government should also provide support for low-income households to be able to acquire clean cookstoves.
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