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NERC, MAN Plan Electricity Micro-Grid Framework

Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission is collaborating with the Manufac­turers Association of Nigeria to develop work plan for a micro grid that would guarantee direct power supply to industrial clusters nationwide.

The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) is teaming up with the Manufacturers Association
of Nigeria (MAN) to develop a work plan on having a micro grid that would guarantee direct power supply to industrial clusters nationwide.

Inaugurating the technical team yesterday in Abuja, NERC Chairman, Dr. Sam Amadi, said that the innovation
stems from the need to support industrialisation by increasing energy supply to industries, thereby cutting the cost of using alternative fuel energy.

He said that energy (mostly generators) costs accounts for 40 percent production cost at present in Nigeria, but such  move would have a far-reaching effect on reducing the cost of doing business and encouraging the much needed industrialisation.

Earlier this year, Commission began critical campaign for off grid energy to expanding power supply to rural areas.
This was even as it canvassed for embedded power generation that allows distribution companies (Discos) to
have more electricity to distribute.

“Few months, we thought about how to support industrialisation by increasing energy supply to industries thereby reducing the cost of doing business. I do know that energy cost accounts for 40 percent of cost production, which is a huge drag on profitability, industrial capacity, as well as global competitiveness of Nigerian manufacturers.

“NERC has always thought about how we could unleash the industrial potentials by solve the power supply needs
of the industries. We established the embedded generation regulation, the independent distribution network
regulation and the independent transmission network regulation.

And towards the end of last year we started thinking of how we can innovate in these regulations to help industrial

“And we found very ready and willing partner in MAN so we have been collaborating thinking through how we can
drive this process.

We have been having meetings with MAN in the past and these culminated in setting up a committee, a task team to help us think around the regulatory, technical financial and social issues around providing steady power supply to the industries through the micro grid for the industrial clusters initiative,”Amadi said.

In his charge, the President of MAN, Dr. Frank Udemba Jacobs, observed that Nigeria’s major challenge is electricity. “Power constitutes 40 percent of our cost of production, and, therefore, any initiative or innovation that will assist us in reducing this amount will be highly welcomed.

“That is why we are highly excited about this development. The idea of micro grid for industrial cluster initiative
is a very good one. We have a number of industrial clusters in the country. Our major challenge is electricity.

I am sure that it can come up with legal framework and policy framework on how to utilise micro grid to generate power for these clusters our cost of production will surely go down and become more competitive in the international market.

“What we are doing today is simply to inaugurate a committee called ‘Technical Committee on Operationalisation of
Micro grid for industrial cluster initiative’,” Jacobs explained.

He said that the committee would converge in Abuja next week and work for another week to develop the plan document.


–  Teddy Nwanunobi, Abuja

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