Nigeria is taking a bold step towards a clean energy future with its ambitious Sustainable Power and Irrigation Project (SPIN), a collaboration with the World Bank.

This initiative aims to unlock a staggering 10,000 megawatts of renewable energy by leveraging the nation’s vast hydropower potential.

At the heart of SPIN lies the focus on maximizing existing resources. The project will harness the power of underutilized dams and dams with hydropower capabilities waiting to be developed. This includes greenfield projects, partially completed dams, and even existing multipurpose dams that can be retrofitted.

The project isn’t solely about generating electricity. SPIN recognizes the importance of integrated water resource management. By optimizing existing storage facilities, the project aims to improve irrigation capabilities, boosting agricultural productivity and food security.

While acknowledging the immense potential of hydropower, Nigeria is committed to responsible development. Minister of Power, Adebayo Adelabu, emphasizes the need to address environmental and social concerns. Stakeholder engagement, innovative financing solutions, and a commitment to sustainability are crucial aspects of SPIN.

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Nigeria boasts a successful track record in hydropower. Existing large-scale projects like the 760 MW Kainji and the newly inaugurated 700 MW Zungeru plants contribute significantly to the national grid.

However, only a fraction of the estimated 14 GW hydropower potential has been harnessed. SPIN aims to bridge this gap, particularly in small hydropower where just a sliver of the 3.5 GW potential is currently utilized.

SPIN aligns perfectly with Nigeria’s Energy Transition Plan and its ambitious target of achieving universal energy access by 2030. This plan calls for 30 gigawatts of electricity generation, with renewables contributing a significant 30%.

Nigeria’s initiative serves as a beacon for Africa. The continent holds vast untapped hydropower resources, and this project paves the way for a sustainable and renewable energy future. By embracing hydropower’s potential, African nations can close the energy access gap, combat climate change, and propel themselves towards a thriving, climate-resilient economy.

Minister Adelabu’s participation in the African Development Bank’s high-level roundtable on sustainable hydropower underscores Africa’s collective commitment to harnessing this clean energy source. With collaborative efforts and a shared vision, Africa can unlock its hydropower potential and light the way for a brighter future.

(Edited by Oludare Mayowa; omayowa@globalfinancialdigest.com; Newsroom: +234 8033 964 138)

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