By Kunle KALEJAYE
As part of concerted effort to boost Liquefied Petroleum Gas, LPG for domestic use across the world with more emphasis in Nigeria, World Liquefied Petroleum Gas Association, WLPGA aims to switch one billion persons from using traditional fuel to LPG.
To achieve this objective, WLPGA said a global initiative called “cooking for life” which has had success in India and Indonesia has been launched in Nigeria in collaboration with Nigeria Liquefied Petroleum Gas Association, NLPGA in Lagos.
President of WLPGA, Mr. James Rockall said as a result of the launch of the scheme, 250 million people in Indonesia and 200 million people in India have already switched to LPG in the last five, an indication that the scheme would work in Nigeria.
If one billion people can switch to LPG, Rockall said one million people especially women and children would not die prematurely every year from indoor pollution
“4 million people die every year as a result of indoor pollution more than the number that die from tuberculosis and malaria combined. There is very little global attention on this issue.
“We have seen in the last year or two that policy makers around the world don’t know that indoor pollution is a major killer and it is a killer that can be solved easily. People are dying because they are using traditional fuel and we can have a wonderful solution to take that problem away from them which is LPG,” he said.
Rockall who spoke with journalists in Lagos said 53 kilograms per person is the average consumption of North Africa region per year noting that in sub-Sahara Africa, per year consumption is just 2 and half kilogram per person.
He lamented that consumption in Nigeria is less than one kilogram per person per year saying that “if we were to take the average consumption based on GDP per capital, Nigeria should be consuming 12 kilogram per capital and if it did, it would take the market in Nigeria up to 1.8 million tons.
“With those figures in mind, one million people in Nigeria should be feasible, it should be more than feasible and quite straight forward.
“I believe that with the right polices in place, with the right regulation and enforcement in this country we can see a market of nearly 200million tons in a year of LPG in 2015. Nigeria is one of the largest markets of LPG in the world and it has the potentials.
“We have come up with a lot of recommendations to the Federal government that would help develop the sector in Nigeria. There was a study that was done in 2001, there was a follow up of the study in 2003 and we had a workshop with the government here in 2009 and there was an agreement to implement what was said in that study and we agreed that we would achieve one million tons in 2015.
“In 2009 there was a meeting with the senate committee on gas and we produced another communiqué and the communiqué said that we essentially agree on what the previous communiqué said. But here we are now it is the end of 2013 and the same issues are still relevant.
“These are the things that need to be done if we can make the policies right, the enforcement of regulation right then investment would follow. If this industry is to grow we must make sure that policies frame work and regulation are properly put in place.
“The media have vital role in rasing awareness on these issues, to improve the health of people, to protect the environment, to reduce disforestation and also bring tax revenue to the state because as the business grows it would bring money into the Nigerian government pocket. So it is a win-win situation for everybody.
President of Nigeria Liquefied Petroleum Gas Association, NLPGA, Mr. Dayo Adeshina also reiterated that government needs to understand that the advantages that comes with using LPG.