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Economy

Electricity: NEMSA cautions consumers on consequences of installing substandard meters

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The Nigerian Electricity Management Services Agency (NEMSA), has warned consumers on the consequences of installing substandard and uncertified electricity meters to avoid loss of lives and property.

Mr Peter Ewesor, the Managing Director of NEMSA gave the warning at a news conference in Abuja on Thursday

“To avoid these dangers and unwarranted bad consequences of uncertified meters, NEMSA statutorily tests and certifies electricity meters before they are allowed to be used in Nigeria.

“This is in line with Part 2, Section 6b of the NEMSA Act 2015,’’ he said.

He listed the features of NEMSA tested and certified meters in line with the “Nigeria Metering Code Version 02’’ to include a plastic seal with NEMSA inscription and a NEMSA test label.

Ewesor also said that the standard transformers (TSs) capacities for use in Nigeria includes 2.5 Mega Volt Amp (MVA), 5MVA, 7.5MVA, 15MVA up to 30 MVA

According to him, Distribution Transformers should be 25 kilovolt-Ampere (KVA), 50KVA, 100KVA, 200KVA, 500KVA, 1000KVA, 1500KVA and 2,500.

Ewesor noted that “Derogation’’ with respect to inappropriate transformer Vector group was not an excuse not to comply with specifications as per extant regulations.

“Thus the customers on the 11KV0.415 network who are majority are now deprived of adequate and reliable supply,’’ he said.

Ewesor said that in line with Part 2, Section B, and Part 5 Section 11.4 of the NEMSA Act-2015, the organisation had been given the mandate to enforce all technical standard and rules.

He said that the mandate also gives room for the effective monitoring of implementation of electricity supply by industries.

According to him, the mandate is to ensure effective and efficient production and safe delivery of power and to ensure safe use of that power and safety of lives and property in the industry.

“We are also to certify all electrical contractors and personnel in the industry as that is one of the principal instruments we use to monitor.

“And to ensure that those carrying out electrical installation are doing it rightly and appropriately and meeting all relevant requirements.

“Moreso, we are by law mandated to publish any report that will ensure and support growth of the sector.’’

Edited by Ese E. Ekama

 

Economy

NERC says 62.3% electricity consumers still on estimated billing

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The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), on Saturday said 62.3 per cent of electricity consumers in the country were still on estimated billing as at December 2019.

NERC made this known in its Fourth Quarter 2019 Report which was obtained from its website by News Agency of Nigeria in Lagos.

The commission said: “Inadequate metering remains a serious challenge in the industry, with only 3,918,322 (37.77 per cent) of the total customer population of 10,374,597

metered.

With 62.37 per cent of the end-use customers on estimated billing, huge collection losses due to customer apathy have posed a serious challenge to the viability and sustainability of the industry.”

It said  in comparison to the third quarter of 2019, the  numbers of registered and metered customers increased by 699,850 (7.23 per cent) and 22,825 (0.59 per cent) respectively.

NERC said the increase in the number of registered customers was attributable to the on-going enumeration exercise by DisCos while the increase in metered customers was due to the roll-out of meters under the Meter Asset Provider (MAP) schemes.

It said: “The commission notes with concern that the additional 22,825 end-use customers’ meters installed during the fourth quarter fell significantly from the 83,768 meters installed during the third quarter.

“This poses risk to the Commission’s goal of closing the metering gap in Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry (NESI) by Dec. 31, 2021.

 “Although some MAPs have not fully commenced meter deployments, the low metering recorded during the quarter was partly due to the increase of 35 per cent in import duty on meter components.

NERC said it was  already working with the Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning toward addressing those issues in order to fast-track meters roll-out.

It said during the period under review, only Abuja, Eko, Enugu, Ikeja, Kaduna, and Port Harcourt DisCos metered additional customers.

According to NERC,  the metering status of the DisCos as at December 2019 is: Benin DisCo, 53.71 per cent;  Abuja,  52.39 per cent; Eko,  46.67 per cent; Ikeja, 40.38 per cent and Jos,  31.71 per cent.

Others are: Port Harcourt, 38.34 per cent; Ibadan, 32.21 per cent; Kaduna,  22.2 per cent; Kano, 18.36 per cent; Enugu , 41.26 per cent and Yola, 18.75 per cent.

The commission said it would continue to monitor the DisCos to ensure total compliance with the MAP regulations.


Edited By: Emmanuel Okara/Donald Ugwu (NAN)

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Economy

Nigerian electricity supply industry recorded ₦119.46bn deficit in Q4 2019, says NERC

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The Nigerian Electricity Regulation Commission (NERC), on Saturday said the Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry (NESI) recorded N119.46 billion deficit in the fourth quarter of 2019.

NERC said the 11 Electricity Distribution Companies (DisCos) only remitted a total of ₦74.20 billion out of the ₦193.66 billion invoice issued to them for energy received and administrative charges during the period.

The Fourth Quarter Report was obtained by News Agency of Nigeria in Lagos from the website of NERC, which is the regulator of the industry.

NERC said liquidity challenge was still a major issue in NESI in spite of the recent improvement in Aggregate Technical, Commercial and Collection (ATC&C) losses by the 11 Electricity Distribution Companies (DisCos).

“This is evidenced in the DisCos’ international and special customers’ remittances to Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading Plc (NBET) and Market Operators (MO) during the fourth quarter of 2019.

“During the fourth quarter, DisCos were issued a total invoice of ₦193.66 billion for energy received from NBET and for administrative services by MO.

“However, only a total of ₦74.20 billion (38.32 per cent) of the invoice was settled as and  when due, creating a total deficit of ₦119.46 billion including tariff shortfall, ” the regulatory agency said.

NERC said Eko DisCo recorded the highest remittance rate (51.50 per cent) in the fourth quarter of 2019 followed by Abuja with 51.27 per cent remittance rate.

It added that although Jos DisCo’ settlement rate improved during the fourth quarter, its remittance rate of 19.57 per cent was the lowest in the fourth quarter of 2019.

NERC also disclosed that total market invoices were issued to the special customer (Ajaokuta Steel Co. Ltd) and the international customers (Societe Nigerienne d’electricite (NIGELEC)and Communaute Electrique du Benin (CEB) during the same period.

According to NERC, N29.50 million was issued to Ajaokuta Steel Company while N2.07 billion was issued to NIGELEC and CEB respectively.

The commission, however, said neither NBET nor MO received payments from these customers during this period.

“Although there has been a significant improvement, the challenge of low remittance to the market is still a concern to the commission as it is one of the main causes of the

liquidity crisis facing NESI.

” Low remittance adversely affects the ability of NBET to honour its financial obligations to Electricity Generation Companies (GenCos).

 “Also, service providers struggle with the paucity of funds impacting their capacity to perform their statutory obligations,” NERC said.

It therefore urged the DisCos to rapidly improve on their revenue collection from customers in order to fulfill their remittance obligations and mitigate financial distress in NESI.

NERC said to enforce payment discipline and compliance with minimum remittance, it had during the fourth quarter, began enforcement action against  DisCos that defaulted in the third quarter billing cycle.

Following the commencement of the enforcement by the Commission, all DisCos except Enugu DisCo have met their expected Minimum Remittance Threshold for the third quarter.


Edited By: Emmanuel Okara/Donald Ugwu (NAN)

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Economy

8.10m MWh electricity generated in Q4 2019 – NERC

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The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) has said that 8.101 million Megawatts-hour (MWh) of electricity was generated in the fourth quarter (Q4) of 2019.

NERC made this known in its Fourth Quarter Report 2019 obtained on Saturday by the News Agency of Nigeria in Lagos from its website.

The regulatory agency said the total electricity generated during the fourth quarter of 2019 was 1.46 per cent higher than the energy generated during the preceding quarter.

The commission said: “Within the same quarter, the industry recorded a peak daily generation of 5,157MW.

“The available plant generation units on bar decreased to 63 from the daily average of 66 units recorded in the preceding quarter.

“However, in spite of the decrease in the available generation units in the fourth quarter, the total electric energy generated increased by 1.46 per cent with 5.44 percentage points increase in generation capacity utilisation. “

According to NERC, the improved capacity utilisation is attributed to reduction in constraints such as gas supply shortage, transmission and distribution networks and water management at the hydropower stations.

It also disclosed that there was one incidence of partial system collapse (failure of a section of the grid) during the fourth quarter of 2019, as compared to zero partial system collapse recorded during the third quarter.

The commission disclosed that the resolution of technical and operational constraints in Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry (NESI) remains one of its the top priorities.

NERC said it would continue to work on addressing the interface bottlenecks between the 11 electricity Distribution Companies (DisCos) and the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN).

It said the move intends to free up part of the stranded generation capacity by addressing the technical constraints inhibiting the flow of energy.

NERC said: “Also, the commission is currently reviewing the Performance Improvement Plans (PIPs) submitted by the DisCos.

“The PIPs, which were prepared following guidelines issued by the commission, cover the period 2020-2025.

“They have an overall objective of ensuring that utilities invest in projects critical to addressing the technical and operational challenges affecting their operational efficiency,” it said.


Edited By: Emmanuel Okara/Muhammad Suleiman Tola (NAN)

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Foreign

Iraq signs 2-year deal to continue importing electricity from Iran

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Iraq has signed a two-year contract to extend the import of electricity from neighboring Iran, the Ministry of Electricity said Friday.

According to the agreement, Iraq will continue to import electricity from Iran for the remaining period of 2020 and 2021, said Ahmed al-Abadi, the ministry’s spokesman, in a statement.

Earlier, Iranian Minister of Energy Reza Ardakanian said an Iranian delegation signed on Wednesday in Baghdad an agreement with Iraqi Electricity Ministry to extend exporting electricity to Iraq.

Baghdad paid Tehran about 400 million United States dollars, which is half of Iraq’s due debts to Iran for electricity supplies, he added.

Iraq has been importing electricity for some years and fuel for some power stations from Iran which has been under United States sanctions.

However, Washington periodically excluded Iraq from the sanctions as the country has been suffering acute power shortage since 2003.

(XINHUA)

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Foreign

UN puts Nigeria’s electricity access rate at 57%

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No fewer than 110.7 million Nigerians out of a 195.8 million estimated population had access to electricity as of 2018, according to the latest global energy progress report.

This represents a 57 per cent national electricity access rate compared with the global average of 90 per cent, says the report launched at the United Nations on Thursday.

It indicates an increase in the number of Nigerians with access to electricity by 34.6 million people from 76.1 million in 2010.

On the global scene, the report says the world has made “promising progress’’ towards ensuring universal access to sustainable energy over the last decade.

According to the document, the number of people without access to electricity dropped from 1.2 billion globally in 2010 to 789 million in 2018.

This, however, is not the case in Nigeria, where the figure rather increased from 82.4 million people without electricity access in 2010 to 85.2 million in 2018.

The reports states that renewable energy solutions played a big role in the global progress, with more than 136 million people receiving basic electricity services from off-grid sources by 2018.

According to the document, the world saw an improvement in renewable energy consumption from 16.3 per cent in 2010 to 17.3 per cent in 2018.

In Nigeria, the report shows that renewables accounted for 83 per cent of the total energy consumed by the citizens in 2017.

But there was a decline in the renewables to total energy ratio in the country from 86.9 per cent in 2010 to the 83 per cent recorded in 2017.

“Still, unless efforts are stepped up significantly, an estimated 620 million people globally would remain without access to electricity in 2030.

“This number could become even higher with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic,’’ the report warns.

Titled “Tracking SDG 7: The Energy Progress Report’’, the document is published annually by custodian agencies of Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 7, which targets energy access for all.

It provides the most comprehensive look available at the world’s progress towards global energy targets on access to electricity, clean cooking, renewable energy and energy efficiency.

The report also serves to guide international cooperation and policy making to achieve universal and sustainable energy access by 2030.

It is produced by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) in collaboration with the International Energy Agency (IEA), World Bank, Word Health Organisation (WHO) and other relevant agencies.

The report also captures a huge increase in the number of Nigerians with access to clean cooking fuels and technologies between 2010 and 2018.

As of 2018, 20.5 million people or 10 per cent of the population had access to clean cooking energy, up from just 2.7 million people in 2010.

But many Nigerians remained behind on this score with 175.4 million citizens lacking access to clean cooking energy sources in 2018 as against 155.8 million people in 2010.

This also means that the country missed out on the global decline in the number of people without access to clean cooking energy sources from three billion in 2010 to 2.8 billion in 2018.

However, the report reflects an improvement in the country’s energy efficiency by 6.4 per cent between 2015 and 2017, higher than the global average of 5 per cent.

On financing, the document indicates that Nigeria received a total of five billion dollars (about N1.8 trillion) from abroad in support of its renewable energy efforts.

This included funds from the country’s international development partners under Public Private Partnership (PPP) arrangement on renewable energy projects.


Edited By: Muhammad Suleiman Tola (NAN)

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Foreign

Electricity generation in Denmark set “green record” in 2019

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Denmark’s electricity generation in 2019 has produced the lowest CO2 emissions ever, according to Energinet, Danish transmission system operator for electricity and gas.

The company’s Environmental Report released on Thursday said a kilowatt-hour produced in Denmark emitted 135 grams of carbon in 2019. In 2018, the figure was 194 grams per kWh.

“If you look at it historically, it is a real, really low number, and it shows the impressive green journey that the Danish electricity system has been on. In 1990, a kilowatt-hour produced emitted over 1,000 grams of carbon – about seven times as much,” said Hanne Storm Edlefsen, area manager for Electrical System Responsibility at Energinet.

Energinet has attributed the record-breaking year to the generation of more green power and far less coal used in electricity production.

Coal consumption fell by 46 percent to 33.5 percent in Denmark in 2019, which is also a record low.

“It is worth noting that while fossil fuels are being phased out, Denmark maintains its annual net production of electricity. The green, so to speak, replaces the black. It underpins that green conversion, high security of supply, and an affordable electricity price can go hand in hand,” said Edlefsen.

The figures are taken from Energinet’s annual “Environmental report on Danish electricity generation and cogeneration”, which is based on the Danish Energy Agency’s Energy Producer Count.

(XINHUA)

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Economy

GDP: Expert urges  FG to prioritise mechanised agriculture, electricity to boost growth    

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An Economic Expert, Dr Uju Ogubunka, has  urged the Federal Government to give more priority to mechanised agriculture and critical infrastructure to accelerate the growth of the nation’s GDP.

Ogubunka, who is a former Executive Secretary of the  Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN),gave the advice  in an interview with News Agency of Nigeria in Lagos on Tuesday.

According to him, the Federal Government  must give extra attention to mechanised agriculture if the GDP is to be boosted within the  next quarter.

“ The agric sector has the capacity to improve  the country’s food output, regardless of the health pandemic.

“This is as agriculture is one of  the most reliable means of  generating employment and empowering youths in the hinterland,” he said.

He, however, said that the federal government should sustain its investment in key infrastructure in order  to stimulate growth in the economy.

“ The various electricity projects should be completed at the nick of time so as to accelerate industrialisation of the country.

“All  the railway reconstruction should be intensified to support the non oil sector, “ he said.

Ogbunka  said that  the tiers of government should put in more effort in tackling the security challenges limiting the inflow of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) into the country.

NAN reports that Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2020, grew by 1.87 per cent (year-on-year) in real terms, representing a drop of 0.23 per cent  points.

This is as compared to Q1 2019 and 0.68 per cent  points decline compared to Q4 2019.


Edited By: Vivian Ihechu and Abdullahi Yusuf (NAN)

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Economy

FG, Siemens deal excites electricity consumer group

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The All Electricity Consumers Protection Forum says the implementation of the power supply deal between the Federal Government and Siemens can help end the country’s energy crisis.

Mr Adeola Samuel-Ilori, the National Co-ordinator of the forum, spoke to the News Agency of Nigeria on Monday in Lagos while reviewing performance of President Muhammadu Buhari in the power sector.

NAN recalls that the Presidency recently approved the release of fund for the first part of Phase 1 of the Presidential Power Initiative to start the pre-engineering and concession financing workstreams.

Adeola said the success of the Siemen’s deal was pivotal to Nigeria’s power sector road map aimed at improving electricity generation, transmission and distribution across the country.

He said: “The contract as signed will enhance the distribution networks and also increase generation capacity to 40,000MW.

“Another beautiful thing about the contractual agreement is the elimination of middlemen and subcontractors which characterised past government efforts and led to humongous fraud.

“The deal with Siemens is government to government tripartite agreement.

“With its vast implementation within the next two years, we should witness improvement in the sector and that will be enviable and may end Nigeria’s energy woes.”

He said that the Buhari-led administration would largely be remembered for the success or failure in the sector, and noted that its predecessors spent enormous resources on the power sector with little or no results.

“All successive governments have inherited the burden of power sector in this nation; it’s like a sore thumb in their fingers.

“Some came with genuine intention to make it better but ended up messing it up while some choose to better it but ended up bettering their pockets.

“We have had some humongous amounts expended in the past which resulted in little or no result that are beneficial to the masses,” Samuel-Ilori said.

He added that there was need for an urgent review of power privatisation process because it had failed to realise its objectives of improving electricity supply to Nigerians.


Edited By: Chinyere Bassey/Ejike Obeta (NAN)

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General news

Kano Electricity Company warns customers against illegal reconnection

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The Management of Kano Electricity Distribution Company (KEDCO) has warned customers against engaging quacks to reconnect their electricity when disconnected by the company’s technical staff.

This is contained in a statement signed by the KEDCOS’s Head, Corporate Communications, Mr Ibrahim Sani-Shawai, made available to the News Agency of Nigeria on Friday in Kano.

He said that it had become a recurring trend for some customers who default in payment to reconnect electricity illegally when cut off.

The spokesman said the company would no longer tolerate such acts from anyone, and had set up a monitoring team to curb the practice.

“We wish to state that such a criminal offence would, henceforth, be treated in line with the provisions made by law.

“Aside from the economic loss, it also endangers the lives and properties of our customers and staff,”  he said.

He appealed to customers to cultivate the habit of paying up their electricity bills as and when due.

According to him, this will enable KEDCO to generate revenue to meet its obligations to staff and ensure quality service delivery.

Edited By: Angela Okisor/Oluwole Sogunle (NAN)

 

 

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