The Solius NGPC, Peoples Home Association and Solar Force Nigeria Limited, three energy companies has pledged to set up 1 gigawatt (gw), solar power capacity in the country, in a programme which entails large utility-scale power projects as well as distributed power projects.
Peoples Home Association promised to set up 500 megawatts (mw) of capacity across the country, to be added in five tranches of 100mw each. Solar Force Nigeria Limited will set up 200 small-scale projects of 1mw each in as many villages as possible.
Solius NGPC is expected to set up the balance 300mw capacity. However, the size and type of the projects is yet unknown. The company said it will also set up a training centre for power sector professionals. Peoples Home Association will also set up solar research centres in universities spread across Nigeria to help generate about 10,000 jobs in the solar power sector.
The federal government has pledged full assistance to these companies and will provide them with land and a transmission network, and it will help the companies meet regulatory requirements for setting up the projects.
With these fresh memoranda of understanding, the total solar power capacity pledged by various companies in Nigeria in 2015 is expected to be more than 5gw.
Earlier this year, SkyPower FAS Energy signed a series of agreements to set up 3gw of solar power capacity in the country. This capacity would be added through utility-scale projects and represents an investment worth $5 billion.
In late November, two United States-based companies pledged to set up a total solar power capacity of 1.2gw by 2017.
The projects will require a cumulative investment of $2 billion dollars and once operational will generate enough power to meet the demands of 1 million homes in the country.
In the same vein, a consortium of American investors in renewable energy, under the auspices of Motir Seaspire, had earlier signed a MoU with the federal government to deliver in two years 1,200mw of solar powered electricity in Nigeria.
Chinedu Nebo, minister of power, who made this known explained that the proposed solar technology to be installed is guaranteed US standard, assuring that the consortium has the capacity to increase the scope of the project up to 10,000mw in the next five years.

Johnson Alabi
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