As the global energy landscape undergoes a profound shift towards sustainability, Nigeria finds itself at the epicenter of a transformative opportunity.
The recently signed 1.2MMMTPA gas supply deal with Germany marks a pivotal moment in Nigeria’s energy narrative, propelling the nation into the forefront of the green hydrogen export market.
During the visit of German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, attention was drawn to an intriguing investment prospect—the export of green hydrogen from Africa, specifically Nigeria. With Germany aiming for net-zero CO2 emissions by 2045, the quest for large quantities of green hydrogen becomes paramount. This aligns with the European Union’s commitment of 70 billion euros to the green hydrogen economy by 2030.
Hydrogen, a versatile energy vector, has gained prominence due to its potential to address carbon emissions in challenging sectors like heavy industry and long-distance transport. Green hydrogen, produced through electrolysis using renewable energy sources, emerges as a clean and sustainable solution. The rising global demand for green hydrogen has positioned Nigeria, blessed with abundant solar resources, as a key player in the burgeoning green hydrogen economy.
Reports estimate the global hydrogen market to reach a staggering $2.5 trillion by 2050, creating immense economic opportunities for nations investing in this clean energy transition. Nigeria’s Green Hydrogen Atlas underscores the country’s suitability for green hydrogen export, projecting a potential to generate 15,510.08 TWh/yr of green hydrogen by 2050.
However, to fully harness this potential, Nigeria needs a comprehensive infrastructure development strategy. The existing National Energy Master plan, while a significant step, falls short in providing a detailed roadmap for green hydrogen infrastructure development beyond Technical Readiness two. A more coherent and robust national green hydrogen policy is imperative, covering key aspects such as production, storage, transportation, utilization, and access to finance.
While green hydrogen production and export present an opportunity for foreign exchange earnings, it’s crucial to strike a balance that ensures it doesn’t compromise domestic energy access and affordability. Nigeria, grappling with energy demand challenges, can integrate green hydrogen production with local energy needs. The synergy between renewable energy sources for hydrogen production and meeting domestic energy demand can bolster the national grid and contribute to ongoing efforts in expanding energy access.