From Femi Folaranmi, Yenagoa
The spokesman of the Nigerian Gas Association (NGA), Mr Odianosen Masade, has urged the African continent to adopt a diversified approach to the energy transition quest and leverage on its abundant gas reserves.
Masade, an energy expert, in an interview on Monday in Yenagoa, amidst rising global energy costs and increased calls for the replacement of fossil fuels, noted that the African continent should adopt a diversified approach to the energy transition.
While noting that Africa currently accounts for the least share of global greenhouse gas emissions, at just 3.8 per cent in contrast to 23 per cent in China, 19 per cent in the US, and 13 per cent in the European Union, added that Africa is the least industrialized of all the continents in the world, yet one of the most vulnerable to climate change.
According to him, it was regrettable that whilst the developed economies responsible for the challenges posed by climate change took over a century to reposition for fossil transition, Africa is expected to transition over a few decades.
Masade commended the recent transformation of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) into a commercially and profit-oriented business entity in line with several calls by experts to increase its efficiency and separate its regulatory, revenue-generating, and oil production components.
“The idea is for the entity to become profitable. With privatization, the NNPC will be relieved of all the burdens of government control and become autonomous.
“The NNPC can now be listed on the Stock Exchange, secure investments and generate more revenue for the country,” he said.
Masade lamented the challenges inhibiting Nigeria from maximizing the opportunities presented by the conflict in Ukraine, which has reduced the global supply of gas.
According to him, lack of political will and lack of investments in critical infrastructure are some of the greatest reasons for Nigeria’s disadvantaged position.
He listed one of such infrastructures that would have generated significant income for the country as the Trans-Saharan gas pipeline, which will traverse Nigeria, Niger and Algeria across the Sahara Desert to Europe.
Masade disclosed that it is estimated that once completed, the $13 billion pipeline would transport up to 30 billion cubic meters (1 trillion cubic feet) of natural gas per annum from Warri in Nigeria through Niger and Algeria onto Europe.