Inspired by the need to diversify Nigeria’s energy mix and plug the current electricity shortfall, the federal government has set an ambitious target of generating 4,800 megawatts of electricity from nuclear sources between 2025 and 2028, the Chairman, Nigerian Atomic Energy Commission (NAEC), Simon Mallam, disclosed recently.
The federal government, it would be recalled, recently signed an agreement for the construction and operation of nuclear power plants and nuclear research center with the Russian government. Rosatom, Russia’s state owned nuclear energy provider signed on behalf of the Russian government while the NAEC – signed on behalf of the Nigerian government.
The NAEC boss said the decision by government to target between 2025 – 2028 was necessitated by the fact it takes a longer duration to produce electricity through a nuclear source. He further pointed out that investment in nuclear energy requires a long-term process, unlike solar energy, which he noted, can be produced in a relatively shorter period.
A few months ago, Nigeria’s minister of power, works and housing, Babatunde Fashola, expressed optimism that Nigeria is inching closer towards diversifying its energy mix with the inclusion of nuclear energy. Fashola stressed that nuclear energy would lead to sustainable development, stressing that nations have moved towards adoption of cleaner and more sustainable energy sources, which nuclear energy provides.