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Oil Serve CEO bemoans West Africa’s lethargy in renewable energy

Oil Serve CEO bemoans West Africa’s lethargy in renewable energy

A leader in turnkey engineering and oil and energy consultancy has expressed dismay in the seeming lethargy experienced in West Africa over drive for renewable energy.

The lamentation was poured by Emeka Okwuosa, a fellow of the Nigerian Society of Engineers (FNSE) and Chairman/CEO of Oilserv Group, who said Africa needs $3 trillion to meet its energy needs.

This was the highlight at the Power-to-Power Summit in Port Harcourt by Port Harcourt Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (PHCCIMA) in conjunction with Oilserv Group.

Okwuosa, who was represented by another engineer from the group, Emeka Eze, said West Africa ranks high in the quality of solar power needed to anchor its energy source on solar energy. Oilserv Group is An Engineering, Oil & Gas, Power, Agricultural & Mining Conglomerate in Africa with strong footprint in pipeline technology and project execution in the oil industry.

The summit attracted to participants including Stanislas Kamanzi, the Rwandan High Commissioner in Nigeria, as well as John Udeagbala, the national president of the National Associations of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA).

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The high caliber participants were told that West Africa is not developing renewable energy like South and East Africa whereas that would be the best way to alleviate poverty in the region. He said there is need for massive investment in energy especially alternative energy to create millions of jobs and kick-start gas transition energy to stop cooking with firewood that leads to deforestation.

The expert revealed that whereas South Africa has up to 15 UV index where 9 is enough for solar to be active, West Africa has 11. “Off-grid solutions are costly. Gas is the cheapest energy source. It is $15 to generate a unit whereas some other sources are $350”.

Mentioning opportunities in the power sector, Okwuosa mentioned the gas market expansion such as eastern Nigeria gas pipeline, conversion of natural gas liquid, and driving energy storage system.

Rwandan High Commissioner in Nigeria, Kamanzi, said power is needed to support production and economic growth.

The Chairman/CEO, GGI Group Ltd, Innocent Akuvue, who is the chairman of the power subgroup in PHCCIMA, said there is need to tackle power problem because everywhere you go, at any summit, people say power is number one problem of Nigeria.

Speaking, the Udeagbala of NACCIMA commended PHCCIMA president for sustaining the tempo for which City chamber is, adding that alternative and renewable energy is urgently needed to help businesses in the interim.

He said North Africa generates an average of 157 megawatts, but West Africa is just 15mw. “We must copy other countries and do what they do to get their power supply system work.”

The host city chamber boss, Mike Elechi, said; “We have carefully identified the need to examine the power situation in Nigeria and identified the solutions and at the same time, turn these solutions into business opportunities.