The House of Representatives Committee on Environment, has asked the Federal Government to consider granting duty waivers for imported power equipment such as solar panel, inverters, batteries, LED bulbs.
The Chairman of the committee, Johnson Oghuma, representing Etsako East/West Central in the Federal House of Representatives, stated this last Friday while speaking with journalists in Benin, Edo State.
He said the House had also mandated its committees on environment and climate Change to interface with the ministries of environment, finance, science and technology and the Energy Commission of Nigeria with a view to coming up with policies/programmes that would encourage alternative/renewable energy development to reduce global warming and report back within eight weeks for further legislative action.
He said creating the enabling environment for the adoption of Green Energy Technology through duty waivers would encourage wider access to solar energy in Nigeria, adding that it would lead to a reduction in the country’s carbon footprints in line with the global drive for a cleaner and healthier environment.
“In 2015, the world adopted the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, which is aimed at reducing global carbon footprints by 20 per cent. With Nigeria being one of the signatories means it is committed to the reduction of its carbon footprints substantially in line with this global drive for a cleaner and healthier environment.
“A few years later, there have been remarkable improvements and positive developments in the area of renewable energy with global investments increasing by 17 per cent and a rise in global electricity generation by 9.1 per cent,” he said.
The lawmaker also said “Providing the enabling environment will not only ensure increased access to more sources of the power supply but also encourage the transfer of renewable energy technology in Nigeria.”
According to him, the cost of renewable energy technologies, particularly solar technology in Nigeria, is still very expensive and out of the reach of ordinary Nigerians.
“We will appreciate the need for Nigeria to join the group of progressive countries working towards mitigating global warming by adopting alternative and renewable energy technologies,” Oghuma said.
Group Moves Against Oil Theft
A group known as the Association of Surface Tank Oil and Gas Retailers (ASTOGRN) says it will work with other stakeholders to fight the menace of oil theft in the Niger Delta.
Chairperson of the group in Rivers State, Comrade Patience Uche, who spoke with The Tide in an interview in Port Harcourt at the weekend, said the body has inaugurated a special committee to work with other stakeholders to address issues of oil theft and pipeline vandalism.
She said statistics has revealed that oil bunkering activities and pipeline vandalisation in the Niger Delta cost the Federal Government about N5.9bn annually.
Apart from the huge losts in revenue, she said oil bunkering and pipeline vandalisation had also resulted in the lost of lives as most of the vandals are always consumed in pipeline explosions during the bunkering exercises.
Comrade Uche who decried the increasing involvement of youths in illegal bunkering activities advocated for a more proactive and corrective measure to bring lasting solution to the vice.
According to her, part of the solution is the building of modular refineries in the Niger Delta and developing the capacities of youths in the region to be actively involved in the oil and gas industry.
“Most of the youths who got involved in illegal oil bunkering and lost their lives in the process could have played a more creative and productive role in the oil and gas industry if they were functionally trained.
The Federal Government should be serious about the establishment of modular refineries and the training of youths to participate in the process, this will go a long way to tackle the challenges of illegal bunkering in the Niger Delta,” she said.
She said the major drive of the association was to make oil and gas bussines rural based, “to improve the socio economic and general living conditions of its members”
According to her, the association will achieve the targets by encouraging its members to have their licences from the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) to be actively involved in the oil and gas business.
She pointed out that the initiative will also reduce petroleum supplies from foreign marketers through importation of products, and kill the spirit of bunkering from vandals as well as increase the Federal Government revenue on Surface Tank Retails bussines in Nigeria.
‘Consumers Paid More For Diesel, Other Items In Dec’
The prices of a litre of diesel and kerosene as well as a kilogram of cooking gas rose last month, according to latest reports released by the National Bureau of Statistics.
The NBS said the average price paid by consumers for automotive gas oil (diesel) increased by 2.10 per cent month-on-month and by 3.72 per cent year-on-year to N229.81 in December 2019 from N225.08 in November.
It said the states with the highest average price of diesel were Benue (N266.25), Borno (N257.36) and Taraba (N246.67) while those with the lowest average price were Rivers (N203.81), Bayelsa (N209.17) and Ekiti (N215.00).
The average price per litre paid by consumers for national household kerosene increased by 0.96 per cent month-on-month and by 10.27 per cent year-on-year to N320.59 in December from N317.54 in November.
States with the highest average price per litre of kerosene were Imo (N386.01), Gombe (N380.95), and Adamawa (N360.21), while those with the lowest average price were Delta (N260.48), Borno (N269.81) and Abuja (N273.33).
The average price for the refilling of a 5kg cylinder for liquefied petroleum gas (cooking gas) increased by 0.92 per cent month-on-month to N2,018.68 in December from N2,000.29 in November.
According to the NBS, states with the highest average price for the refilling of a 5kg cylinder for LPG were Bauchi (N2,491.57), Borno (N2,383.33) and Adamawa (N2,379.36).
Many businesses and households in the country rely heavily on petrol- and diesel-powered generators for electricity as power supply from the national grid remains poor.
Unlike petrol, diesel and kerosene have been deregulated and their pump prices are adjusted to reflect the reality in the global crude oil markets.
The NBS said the average price paid by consumers for premium motor spirit (petrol) decreased by 0.29 per cent year-on-year and by 0.41 per cent month-on-month to N145.35 in December from N145.94 in November.
It said states with the highest average price of petrol were Benue (N148.50), Kebbi (N147.69) and Abia (N147.33), while those with the lowest average price were Taraba (N143.13), Abuja (N143.67) and Jigawa (N144.14).
Group Lauds FG Over Planned Repositioning Of NDDC
A group known as Patriotic Forum of Niger Delta (PAFOND) has commended President Muhammadu Buhari over his plans to reposition the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) to live up to its statutory mandate of developing the Niger Delta region.
The commendation was part of a communiqué issued at the End of Year general meetings of the forum in Port Harcourt, and made available to The Tide.
The communiqué which was signed by the National chairman of the forum, comrade Owo Udoh, and the National Secretary, Comrade Daniel Wilson, stated that the Niger Delta had continued to suffer development neglect despite its huge to the Nigeria economy.
The forum urged the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio, to commence the construction of roads in the Niger Delta and embark on other projects that will create meaningful impact on the lives of the people.
The group also called on other Niger Delta indigenes serving in the Buhari government,, particularly the Minister of Transportation, Chibuike Amaechi, to attract development projects to the Niger Delta.
The forum called on the governors of the Niger Delta states to channel the resources of the states for proper economic development of the region.
The group which expressed regrets over the, “infrastructural decay” in the Niger Delta, said development potentials in the oil rich region can be properly harnessed if the budgetary allocations for the development of the region are not diverted into personal coffers.
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