The Policy Guidelines on Renewable Electricity (herein referred to as the Policy Guidelines) is the Federal Government of Nigeria’s overarching policy on all electricity derived from renewable energy sources. The Policy Guidelines sets out the Federal Government’s vision, policies and objectives for promoting renewable energy in the power sector.
The Policy Guidelines is drawn primarily from the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (1999), the National Energy Policy (2003), the National Electric Power Policy (2001), Electric Power Sector Reform Act (2005), the Renewable Energy Master Plan (2005), the draft Rural Electrification Policy and the National Economic Empowerment and Development Strategy (NEEDS).
Access to electricity services is critical to achieving economic and social development targets outlined in the NEEDS and the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). The Federal Government of Nigeria is therefore committed to reaching these sustainable development targets through the full mobilization of the electricity sector. Renewable energy presents unique opportunities to scale up access to electricity services nationwide. In the pursuit of these objectives, the Federal Government seeks the implementation of the policy on renewable electricity in collaboration with other levels of government, communities and the private sector for the following specific reasons:
First and foremost, renewable energy represents an important tool in the Government’s overall effort to expand access to electricity services nationwide. Improving access to electricity is consistent with NEEDS and MDG targets in stimulating economic growth, employment creation and poverty reduction. The policy enables the government to align and mainstream renewable energy development in the country with these broader national development aspirations.
Second, rural electricity access in Nigeria is less than 20%. By their nature, renewable electricity technologies are generally modular and are ideal candidates for improving rural electricity access situations in the country. Grid power extensions over long distance to serve low load densities are usually technical and financial a poorer option than decentralized renewable electricity.
Third, until now, renewable electricity has never really been part of the national power planning process. The policy guideline provides a common framework to integrate renewables into the energy technology mix in meeting national electricity supply.
Fourth, renewable electricity provides more diversity and improves the reliability of electricity supply through the grid. This could potentially be important in ensuring the stability of grid electricity supply, especially in times of localized disruption of sources of power supply.