Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has called on the Federal Government to focus on developing renewable energy to bridge the gap of power supply in the country.
Obasanjo argued that apart from solving the issue of insufficient electricity supply, renewable energy will ensure clean and carbon-free emission.
He made the call at the inauguration of a 2 megawatt solar power project at the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library (OOPL).
Obasanjo declared that the goal of producing Nigeria’s electricity from renewable energy “is achievable, affordable and transformative.”
He explained the OOPL solar power project was a reflection of the organization’s commitment to clean and renewable energy.
Obasanjo described the project as “the single largest investment this not-for-profit organization has made.”
He said “We hope that by committing to consume renewable energy we inspire others to follow and still inform others to do their bit for the environment. Our great nation also needs to commit to producing our electricity from renewable energy and truly clean carbon-free sources. This goal is achievable, affordable and transformative. It represents a challenge to all Nigerians – in every walk of life, to our political leaders, entrepreneurs, innovators, engineers, and to every citizen.
“This is a generational moment. I’m asking each of you to join me and build this future. Our success depends on our willingness as a people to undertake this journey. We have a duty of care to the planet and to every person upon it. We must fulfill it by making our energy system clean, efficient, affordable and sustainable”.
Speaking on the solar power project, Obasanjo said, “As large an investment as it is, it is remarkably cost effective. It costs less than two and half years supply of diesel to power our generators. So in diesel terms it pays for itself in less than three years. So in effect the electricity it produces after three years is almost at no cost. In addition, because it is not emitting any green houses gases that diesel generators do, it has the potential to earn carbon credits which are currently priced at US$ 40/ton. Based on estimated annual production of 2,307,000 kilo Watt hours per year, we can expect to earn nearly US$39,589 in carbon credits per year.”
The former President added that the facility would also generate revenue by monetizing it “with strategic sponsorships and marketing alliances we will be able to generate revenue.”
According to him, the solar facility can generate electricity, generate revenues that contribute to the upkeep of the library, help save the planet making a small contribution to climate mitigation and adaptation, provide shade for parking, and be an inspiration for future generations.
He added “Our time on this beautiful earth is limited. In my life I have sought to be a responsible steward for nature. This facility marks one of the enduring personal legacies I am proud to be call my own.
“The responsibility to make this earth green again will fall on you, the coming generations. While you youth may represent 60% or more of our population you represent 100% of its future and the future of humanity. For there to be a future there must be a habitable planet, which you must make. It’s your world now, take it and run with it.”
In his remarks, the Deputy Managing Director of Dantata Solar Limited, the installer of the power project, Najeem Animasahun, said 70 percent of the materials used for the execution of the project as well as the human resources were sourced from Nigeria.
He added that only inverters and the panels were the materials imported into Nigeria