By Ediri Ejoh
The Federal Government has announced plans to establish a 1000 mega watts coal power plant in Enugu state.
The President, Goodluck Jonathan, who disclosed this in Enugu, said the plant is expected to help address the epileptic power situation in the country.
Jonathan, who was represented by Vice President Namadi Sambo, said the plant would complement other electricity projects being executed by the Federal Government and private investors in the area and ensure that Enugu and the rest of the South-east region enjoyed improved electricity supply.
The Federal Government had a couple of weeks ago said the country is capable of generating up to 30 per cent of its energy needs from its coal resources using environmental-friendly clean technology.
Jonathan said the country is endowed with abundant coal reserves of the required quality necessary for power generation.
To this end, the Federal Government signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Coal to Power for the development of Ezinmo Coal Block in Enugu and a 1000 megawatts coal power generating plant.
The MoU was signed between the Ministry of Mines and Steel Development and HTG-Pacific Energy Consortium for the development of the Ezinmo Coal Bricks.
According to Jonathan, “Nigeria is endowed with abundant coal reserve of the required quality necessary for power generation and there is no reason why we should not explore the sector.”
He added that the signing of the MoU is a sysbol of the growing synergy between the Ministries of Mines and Steel Development and Power to attract investors to coal-fired oil generation opportunities.
“We expect the co-operation to continue until we get the desired destination in terms of our power needs,’’ he said.
Also speaking, Minister of Power, Professor Chinedu Nebo, argued that the MoU was on the utilisation of the mining license, granted by the Federal Government for the Ezinmo coal block.
According to him, the license was granted to an indigenous company with a Chinese partner, HTG-Pacific Energy Consortium, for the exploitation and mining of the coal block at Ezinmo.
Continuing, the Minister noted that Ezinmo was a very large coal block which ranged from Enugu State to Benue State.
Nebo said the signing of the MoU, would be followed by Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) that would authorise the investors to build the coal-fired power plant.