Nigeria Powers Universities, Hospitals with New Solar Grids

Hybrid Solar Projects Illuminate Education and Healthcare Sectors

Nigeria has installed hybrid solar grids in a number of its federal institutions and teaching hospitals, marking a significant advancement in both sustainable energy use and educational advancement. The Rural Electrification Agency (REA) is leading this effort that will change how educational and healthcare facilities get and use electricity, affecting more than 400,000 faculty members and students nationwide.

This significant initiative was recently revealed during the Alliance for Rural Electrification Energy Access Forum, which was held in Lagos, by Abba Aliyu, the Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of REA. The system consists of 15 institutions’ worth of hybrid solar grids with a 35.5MW total capacity. This massive project is a part of the larger, $550 million Nigeria Electrification Project, which is supported by the African Development Bank and the World Bank.

The University of Maiduguri and its teaching hospital are among the most significant beneficiaries, having received a 12MW solar grid. This installation is crucial as it powers not only the educational and healthcare facilities but also a water treatment plant in Borno State, demonstrating the potential of renewable energy to support multiple critical sectors simultaneously.

The project extends beyond Maiduguri. Other institutions like the University of Abuja, the Federal University in Yobe, the University of Calabar and its teaching hospital, the Nigerian Defence Academy, the Federal University of Agriculture in Abeokuta, and the Michael Okpara University of Agriculture in Umudike have also been equipped with solar grids. These developments are scheduled for official inauguration by the Minister of Power, Adebayo Adelabu, in the upcoming months.

In conjunction with these installations, further commitments to enhance Nigeria’s energy sustainability were made at the Lagos forum. European Union delegates pledged an additional €4 million (approximately $4.3 million) to support the GET.invest country window aimed at fostering investments in renewable energy. An extra €20 million (around $21.6 million) is also earmarked for a dedicated Nigerian investment facility focusing on renewable energy and agri-business.

The REA is also expanding its reach to rural areas, having signed two Memorandums of Understanding (MoU) to generate 500MW of renewable energy. This initiative focuses on constructing mini-grids to electrify “unserved and underserved communities,” thereby broadening the impact of renewable energy across Nigeria.

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