By Vera Samuel Anyagafu & Prisca Sam-Duru
As part of continuous efforts to ensuring a mutual relationship between Nigeria and Germany, in addition to helping to boost the Nigeria economy especially through renewable energy solutions, the  Consulate General of the Federal Republic of Germany in Lagos, held an interactive seminar for stakeholders in the energy industry recently at Westwood Hotels, Ikoyi, Lagos.

The seminar entitled Stand-Alone Renewable Energy Solutions, enabled relevant stakeholders in the Nigeria renewable energy and energy efficiency sub-sector to directly engage with entrepreneurs in the field and to partake in their profound experiences and competencies focusing on global best practices.

The discussions revolved around energy cost savings and efficiency, environmental protection and employment creation as well as accessing funding or financial schemes, awareness and consumer confidence and the need for increased technical skills.

Declaring the seminar open, the German Consul General, Lagos, Mr Michael Derus, stated that the 2015 seminar is financed by the Climate fund of the German Federal Foreign Office, and  facilitated by the Consulate General of the Federal Republic of Germany in Lagos  in collaboration with the Energy and Environment Desk of the Delegation of German Industry and Commerce in Lagos.

Derus reiterated the high commitment of the German Government to ensure an environmentally sustainable solutions in the field of energy generation and distribution stressing that “In the framework of the Nigerian German Energy Partnership (NGEP), it stands ready to make a contribution to this end. Germany and its partners in the EU are also committed to make the Paris Climate Summit in December 2015 a success.”

The seminar presentations according to the organisers, focused on photovoltaic (PV), its advantages and the introduction of feasible installations in Nigeria. With regard to the slow grid improvement and installations in urban areas coupled with the on-going power shortage, PV stand-alone systems represent an individual solution to self-sustaining power supply. It has a high potential to also become a source of income through decentralised grid feed in the future.

All the presenters averred that stand-alone renewable energy systems do not only supply energy but also enable its users to be energy efficient with users enjoying security and safety in an affordable way.

In his presentation, Mr Juergen Raach of Raach Solar, Germany, spoke on the “Technology and economics of stand-alone photovoltaic power systems which could be installed in urban residential areas with a high demand, currently suffering under frequent power failures and voltage peaks destroying not only electric devices but also, constituting a safety risk.”

On his own part, CEO Blue Camel Energy Limited, Nigeria, Mr Suleiman Yusuf gave a presentation on Living Off Grid And Fossil. He took participants through practical ways of how to incorporate green architecture, renewable energy resources and energy efficiency.

According to Yusuf, his  “10 apartment mini estate developed in Abuja is solely powered on renewable energy resources-wind and solar, and deploys best available energy efficient appliances ranging from AC’s, lightings, DC refrigerators, energy efficient washing machines and other heat appliances, solar powered street and perimeter lighting solutions to solar powered water supply systems.”

Also presenting was Segun Adaju, the CEO of BlueOcean, Nigeria. He introduced new opportunities for MSME with his presentation Pay-As-You-Go (PAYG) solar for Commercial Use. Lack of energy supply he said, “Is the major constraint to the growth and survival of these organisations” explaining that “PAYG Solar provides solutions for the challenges constraining the scaling up of alternative energy as it will provide a financing platform in order to make technologies affordable.” He emphasised that since the business model has supported the uptake of solar especially in East Africa,  Nigerian businesses stand to benefit from its adoption.

At the end, it was noted that government legislation is further need to control the standardisation of equipment and influx of substandard equipment resulting to high failures and high failure rates of government projects.


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