THE federal government will soon commission Nigeria’s first ever wind farm in Katsina State. The wind farm will generate 10 megawatts, MW, of electricity when completed. Godknows Igali, permanent secretary, ministry of power, in a statement, said that the 10MW Katsina wind farm has achieved more than 98 percent completion with its 37 turbines currently being test-run and five already successfully test-run.
The transmission line for the evacuation of the electricity that would be generated from the farm has ready been completed through the Transmission Company of Nigeria, TCN. Although, the timeline for completion of the wind farm has consistently shifted since 2012, the wind farm situated in a small village of Rimi, which is 25 kilometres south of Katsina City is part of Nigeria’s attempt at tapping into her alternative natural sources of electricity generation.
The project was first envisioned by the Katsina State government but it gained full support from the federal government, through the ministry of power in its quest to diversify Nigeria’s energy mix, boost electricity generation and have constant power supply. Contract for the project which is also funded by the Japanese International Cooperation Agency, JICA, which will exploit the vast wind resources in the north of Nigeria, was awarded to French company Vergnet S.A, a certified wind turbine manufacturer, while Nigerian company, O.T. Otis Engineering and German firm, Terrawatt were jointly hired as consultant to supervise the project.
At 55 metres, the average annual mean monthly wind speed for Katsina has been calculated as 6.044 m/s and it is through this that the farm is expected to generate electricity with its 37 wind turbines which have rated power of 275 kW each. Igali however, disclosed that the government is committed to ensuring smooth running of this pilot scheme and it plans to replicate it in the entire northern region of the country where wind velocity is high.
He, however, stressed that harnessing wind resource is an integral part of the newly approved national policy on sustainable energy and energy efficiency, adding that the delay experienced in the completion of the Katsina windfarm was occasioned by the ugly incident of kidnapping of a French national, who was in-charge of the project and the need to subsequently engage another French company to complete the project. He explained that the wind-farm was only one component of the renewable energy programme of the federal government and would get further boost with the approval by the federal executive council, FEC, of the policy on renewable energy and energy efficiency.
Chinese Company to Build Meter Plant in Nigeria
SkyRun Meter Solution, a Chinese company, has completed plans to establish an electricity smart-meter in the Free Trade Zone, in Calabar, Cross River State. This development was one of the fruitful results of several Memoranda of Understanding, MoU, signed between the ministry of power and some Chinese companies since the successful privatisation of the power sector by the outgoing administration.
Godknows Igali, permanent secretary, ministry of power, disclosed this while receiving the company’s management team in his office. He expressed delight that establishing the metering company in Nigeria would enhance revenue generation for distribution companies thereby curtailing the incidence of estimated billing as being experienced by the electricity customers in many parts of the country.
Igali urged SkyRun, which has been in Nigeria for 10 years to collaborate with Distribution Companies, Discos, to meet their specifications as the Discos are distributors to the end users. He also directed the company to get appropriate license from the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission, NERC, and the Electricity Management Service for safety standard and specification as dictated by law.
He decried the situation where about 60 percent of customers are not metered, noting that manufacturing meters in Nigeria would significantly close the metering gap and create employment opportunities for the teaming youths, while also enabling investors re-coup their investment as planned. He further revealed that this administration would give more incentives to local manufacturers to encourage them to establish more companies for the production of metres in the country.
He expressed appreciation for the invaluable contribution of the Nigerian Embassy in China, for wooing investors into the Nigerian power sector, saying that posterity would acknowledge their patriotism in this regard. He also commended the Nigeria – China Business Council, NCBC, for its efforts in establishing the metre company in Nigeria.
— May 25, 2015 @ 01:00 GMT