3 January 2018

Nigeria: Why Electricity Supply Across Nigeria Was Limited On New Year Day

Photo: Premium Times
Lamp in darkness.

Gas constraint, maintenance issues and other challenges forced Nigeria's power generation down amid New Year celebrations on Monday and later Tuesday night, an industry report obtained by PREMIUM TIMES has shown.

According to the operational report prepared by the Transmission Company of Nigeria, TCN, for Monday, the power generated for the first day of the year stood at 4,685 MW, out of a peak demand forecast of 17,720 MW and generation capacity of 7,871 MW.

The report put the eight-hour power generation for the day at 4,257 MW between 12 a.m. and 8 a.m., 3,915 MW between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. and 4,686 MW between 5 p.m. and 12 a.m. Tuesday morning.

The report revealed that power plants such as Kainji, Trans-Amadi and Olorunsogo were shut down due to gas constraints. Others like Alaoji and Geregu NIPP were out due to maintenance issues.

The report said that the peak generation till date, put at 5,222 MW, was recorded on December 18, 2017, while the maximum available capacity - what can actually be generated - to date, put at 7,652 MW, was recorded in April 2014.

There was a case of forced outage Monday, the report revealed, as the Olorunsogo NIPP GT2 plant tripped on reverse power due to tripping of cct. R2A.

TUESDAY OUTAGE

Meanwhile states across Nigeria experienced total blackout Tuesday night.

In many states, the light initially went dim, resulting in a very low voltage, before it went out seconds later.

A staff of the National Control Center in Osun State who spoke with PREMIUM TIMES Tuesday night confirmed that there was a problem but could not immediately give official reasons for the outage.

But the power ministry, in a statement early on Wednesday, attributed the outage to a fire incident that truncated gas supply.

"Regrettably, after a sustained period of increasing production and distribution of power since September 2017 to date, the Nigerian Gas Processing and Transportation Company Ltd (NGPTC) has reported a fire incident on its Escravos Lagos Pipeline System near Okada, Edo State on Tuesday, 2nd January, 2018," the statement said.

"The incident requires a shutdown of the pipeline supplying gas to Egbin 1,320MW; Olorunsogo NIPP 676MW, Olorunsogo 338MW, Omotosho NIPP 450MW, Omotosho 338 MW and Paras 60MW power stations.

"The sudden loss of generation due to interruption in gas supply from these stations caused the national transmission grid to trip off around 20:20 on 2nd January 2018. The national transmission grid is owned and operated by the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN)."

The ministry explained that most of Nigeria's power generation is from thermal power stations that require gas for fuel. It said the gas is produced by oil and gas companies overseen by the Ministry of Petroleum Resources.

The gas is delivered to the power stations through pipelines owned and operated by Nigerian Gas Processing and Transportation Company Ltd (NGPTC), a subsidiary of Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC), it added.

"TCN and the generation companies are working to restore operation of the national grid. Once the national grid is restored output from the hydroelectric power stations and all other unaffected gas fired thermal power stations will be increased to the extent possible to minimize the impact of loss of generation from the affected power stations while NNPC takes necessary steps to restore gas supply.

"We urge members of the public to bear with us as we work to overcome this set back which should be temporary," the statement said.

By Wednesday morning, the problem appeared to have been resolved as electricity supply had been restored to many parts of the country.

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