Power Sector And Other Related News Stories For Wednesday 19th October 2022
LCCI Urges FG to Privatise Electricity Transmission Company
The Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) has advised the Federal Government to privatise the Transmission Company of Nigeria and boost the nation’s economy.
At the LCCI quarterly press conference held in Lagos at the weekend, the group argued that there was no justification for the government’s refusal to sell off the transmission segment of the power sector except to give room for vested interests at the expense of the country’s economic growth.
The president of the LCCI, Dr. Michael Olawale-Cole in his paper presentation, insisted that if the government had justifiable grounds to privatise the generation and distribution components of the electricity value chain, the same government should also know that it has no compelling reasons not to privatise the transmission segment.
According to him, “You will wonder the kind of logic that would justify a government that privatised the power generation and distribution because it was not capable of running them to keep the transmission component to itself. So, in plain language, there is no justification whatsoever for government to keep on holding on to the transmission component.
Why We Located Geometric Power in Aba – Bart Nnaji
Nigeria’s former Minister of Power, Professor Bart Nnaji, has explained why he resigned his post as the Distinguished Professor of Industrial Engineering at the University of Pittsburgh in the United States and Director of e-Design of the United States National Science Foundation to lead a team of Nigerians to set up a 188-megawatt power plant in Aba and an electricity distribution company, also in Aba, Abia State.
Speaking at the 58th birthday of Abia State governor Okezie Ikpeazu this afternoon at the governor’s country home in Umuoboakwa, Obingwa Local Government Area, Professor Nnaji gave two reasons for the decision.
They are the experience he had when he purchased a large expanse of land in Emene to build a company to manufacture vehicle spare parts, including auto engines, only to discover that it couldn’t take off because of the poor electricity situation in the Southeast in particular and the country in general.
The second reason is the request from the then Nigerian Minister of Finance, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, now the World Trade Organisation (WTO), and the then World Bank President, Dr James Wolfohnson, to build a power 50MW plant in Aba to assist both big and small manufacturers.
Lagos Community Battles Electricity Firm Over Police Harassment
Residents of Orile Oko-Oba, in the Agege area of Lagos State, have decried the use of armed policemen by a power firm, Ikeja Electric, to enforce payment of electricity bills.
However, the firm said the cops were for the protection of its staff, who had been previously allegedly attacked in the community.
PUNCH Metro had reported that two of the residents were arraigned for reportedly beating an official of the firm.
After the incident, our correspondent gathered that officials of the electricity company, alongside armed policemen, went to Augusto Avenue, a street in the community, on October 13.
Pictures and videos seen by our correspondent showed the workers and policemen in the community, as youths gathered to resist them.
An executive member of the community, Odewale Amao, said people were terrified by the presence of the armed officers.
He said, “I was called that Ikeja Electric officials brought police officers with them. When we went there, the officials alleged that they brought the police because they thought the residents would attack them. Not long after, another team of armed policemen arrived.
How I Ameliorated The Terrible Electricity Situation in Southeast -Bart Nnaji
Nigeria’s former Minister of Power, Prof. Bart Nnaji, has revealed how he helped in ameliorating the terrible electricity situation in the Southeast by setting up a 188-megawatt power plant in Aba through his company, Geometric Power.
Nnaji, the chairman and CEO of Geometric Power Limited, made the disclosure on Tuesday at the 58th birthday of Abia State governor Okezie Ikpeazu in the governor’s country home, Umuoboakwa, Obingwa Local Government Area of the state.
The former minister of Power recounted an ugly experience he had when he purchased a large expanse of land in Emene, Enugu to build a company to manufacture vehicle spare parts, including auto engines, only to discover that it could not take off because of the poor electricity situation in the Southeast in particular and the country in general.
Nnaji who is also a distinguished Professor of Industrial Engineering at the University of Pittsburgh in the United States and Director of e-Design of the United States National Science Foundation, said the second reason was the request from the then Nigerian Minister of Finance, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, now the World Trade Organisation (WTO), and the then World Bank President, Dr James Wolfohnson, to build a 50MW power plant in Aba to assist both big and small manufacturers.
He said, “They made the request in 2004 after visiting Aba and saw the enormous economic and technological potentials of this city, the headquarters of indigenous technology in Nigeria, but was being paralysed by poor electricity.
Africa First Hydrogen Power Plant to Produce Electricity by 2024
Africa first hydrogen power plant to produce electricity by 2024.
Namibia currently imports more than a third of its power from neighbouring South Africa.
French independent power producer HDF Energy expects its green hydrogen power plant in Namibia, Africa’s first, to start producing electricity by 2024, according to a senior company executive.
Once operational, the 3.1 billion Namibian dollars ($181.25m) Swakopmund project will supply clean electricity power, 24 hours a day all year round, boosting electricity supply in the Southern African nation.
Currently, Namibia imports more than a third of its power from neighbouring South Africa.
One of the world’s sunniest and least densely populated countries, it wants to harness its vast potential for solar and wind energy to produce green hydrogen and position the country as a renewable energy hub in Africa.
Hydrogen is categorised “green” when it is made with renewable power and is seen as key to help decarbonise industry, though the technology remains immature and relatively costly.
The project will see 85MW of solar panels powering electrolysers to produce hydrogen that can be stored.
HDF Energy is also eyeing new projects across Africa and other parts of the world.
Soon after Southern Africa, you will see HDF developing projects in East Africa,” Lecomte told Reuters news agency.
South Africa Withdraws Free Electricity, Water for Ministers
South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa has withdrawn controversial perks for cabinet ministers and their deputies that saw their homes supplied with free electricity and water.
The benefits caused a public outcry as they were considered insensitive at a time South Africans are struggling with daily power cuts and rising cost of living.
In a press briefing on Monday evening, a spokesman said the president “acknowledges and appreciates the public sentiments on the matter”.
The ministerial handbook, which outlines ministerial benefits, will be “aligned to the realities that many South Africans face”, presidential spokesman Vincent Magwenya said.
He said the intention behind the perks was “not a nefarious one”.
The intention was to try and find some form of balance between what ministers could afford versus some of the costs that they have,” he is quoted as saying the by the state news agency.
Taqa Commissions A 20 Mwp Solar Power Plant in Sharm El-Sheikh
Taqa Power, the subsidiary of the Egyptian group Taqa Arabia, recently inaugurated a solar power plant in Sharm El-Sheikh. The power plant dedicated to the supply of this seaside city populated by more than 53,000 people has a capacity of 20 MWp or an estimated annual yield of 42 GWh. It covers an area of 250,000 m2.
With the help of the South Sinai Governorate and the Tourism Development Authority (TDA), which provided land, Taqa funded and carried out this project. In addition, the Egyptian Electricity Utilities Regulation and Consumer Protection Agency (EEURPA) and the New and Renewable Energy Authority (NREA) both assisted the solar energy provider (EgyptERA).
The Taqa solar power project investment was 250 million Egyptian pounds, or just over $12.7 million. The Cairo-based firm will run the solar power facility for 25 years. The park, whose construction required less than 100 people, will also supply electricity to the Nabq region and Global Energy, a division of Taqa Arabia. It is a 600 km2 protected natural area close to Sharm El-Sheikh.
Six thousand hotel rooms that will house delegations from around the world during the 27th United Nations Climate Conference are scheduled to receive clean energy from the facility (COP27).
Eskom to Implement Stage 3 Load Shedding in South Africa
Not long after South Africa’s load shedding was reduced from Stage 4 to Stage 2, Stage 3 load shedding will kick in very soon.
South African power company Eskom stated that Load shedding Stage 3 would resume soon to sort out the power challenges they have been experiencing in the past weeks.
The power utility will publish a further update on Friday afternoon or as soon as any further significant changes occur.
A unit each at Duvha, Medupi and three at Kendal power stations have returned to service. However, a generation unit each at Arnot, Camden, Tutuka and Kusile power stations remains out of service following breakdowns.
Eskom reiterated that load shedding is implemented only as a last resort because of the shortage of generation capacity and the need to attend to breakdowns.
Germany to Cap Electricity Prices by Taxing Excess Profits
Germany’s government plans to introduce a cap on electricity prices for households and industry to ease the impact of soaring energy costs, a ministry document seen by Reuters on Wednesday showed.
To help finance the cap and pay for the stabilisation of power transmission grids, Berlin is considering skimming off some of electricity companies’ profits, the document showed.
The scheme would also be financed by a 200 billion euro relief package Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s government announced late last month to help households and companies cope with soaring energy prices in Europe’s largest economy.
The document did not, however, specify how much funds would be drawn from the package and how much from the levy to finance the cap.
The cap would be based on the previous annual electricity consumption. Its design would be similar to a price brake for gas, details of which the government announced earlier this month, the document showed.
Unlike the proposed government relief for gas consumers, the draft does not include a one-off payment worth one month’s electricity bill this year.
As part of the plan, Berlin may skim off 90% of the power profits that electricity companies make above production costs, the paper showed. For spot prices, the levy would apply retroactively from March, and for future prices from December, it said.