Nigeria’s 27 power plants have only been able to achieve power generation of 3,922.2 megawatts despite having a combined installed capacity of 13,014.14MW.
This represents only 30 per cent efficiency of Nigeria’s national grid as 11 power plants were idle, leading to erratic power supply in most parts of the country.
The idle plants included six of those built under the National Integrated Power Project, namely Geregu II, Sapele II, Olorunsogo, Omotosho, Ihovbor, and Gbarain. The others were Afam IV&V, Ibom Power, AES, ASCO and Egbin ST6.
Electricity generation in the country has been hovering between 3,000MW and 5,000 MW as a result of gas constraints, transmission line issues and low demand by electricity distribution companies.
The country generates the bulk of its electricity from gas-fired power plants, while output from hydropower plants makes up about 30 per cent of the total.
While the federal government wants to fully implement the autogas initiative to make Nigerians use gas for their cars, gas shortage is affecting power plants as the country is producing less than 5,500 megawatts (MW) of electricity for its teeming population.
Latest data obtained by BizWatch Nigeria from the Nigeria Electricity System Operator (NESO) on Monday showed that 3,922.2MW was generated as of 6.00 am on Sunday, slightly higher than the 3,878.4MW produced the previous day.
The system operator put the nation’s installed generation capacity at 13,014.14MW; available capacity at 7,652.60MW; transmission wheeling capacity at 8,100MW; and the peak generation ever attained at 5,801.6MW.
Stranded power represents available energy capacity which could not be generated, transmitted and distributed in the value chain due to system failures.
It also indicates poor level of investment in the value chain especially the Electricity Distribution Companies, DisCos, that could have strengthened power supply and utilization.
This is despite a total of $6.15bn secured by the Federal Government to fund various capital projects in the power sector.
Meanwhile, the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission has directed power distribution companies to pay for the capacity charge of the rejected energy.
Discos often reject electricity load due to constraints in their networks, a practice which power generation, transmission companies and the Minister of Power, Sale Mamman, had condemned.
To address this, the NERC in its Guidelines for Implementation of Economic Merit Order Dispatch and Other Related Matters, stated that going forward, any Disco found wanting in this matter would have to pay.
It said this was in accordance with the December 2019 Minor Review of the Multi-Year Tariff Order 2015 and Minimum Remittance Order for the Year 2020.
The commission said Section 11 of the order directed that the “Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading company shall hereafter invoice for capacity charge and energy to Discos based on their load allocation and metered energy, respectively.”
It further stated that Section 12 of the order concluded that “where it is established that the Transmission Company of Nigeria is unable to deliver a Disco’s load allocation, TCN shall be liable to pay for the associated capacity charge.
“Where a Disco fails to take its entire load allocation due to constraints in its network, the Disco shall be liable to pay the capacity charge as allocated in its vesting contract.”