KEYNOTE SPEECH DELIVERED BY CHIEF DUMO LULU-BRIGGS, CHAIRMAN OF PLATFORM PETROLEUM LIMITED, AT THE 2023 OFFSHORE TECHNOLOGY CONFERENCE (OTC), HOUSTON, TEXAS.
Good morning, and welcome to this panel session on ENERGY TRANSITION IN AFRICA: THE JOURNEY, CHALLENGES, AND WAY FORWARD.
I thank the leadership of The Petroleum Association of Nigeria (PETAN) for the honor to address this special session.
Today, we are gathered here to discuss the transition to a future built on sustainable energy as a pressing issue facing the oil and gas industry, our continent, and the world at large.
After the traditional biomass, coal and fossil fuels, the world is shifting towards a new energy future with the fourth transition in modern history already set in motion by the COP 21 Paris Agreement. A goal to limit greenhouse gas emissions to 1.5-2⁰C by 2050 has been set.
Every country will have to change its ways” says Bill Gates in his book entitled “How To Avoid A Climate Disaster”. In 2015, 196 countries agreed in Paris to reach carbon neutrality by the middle of the 21st century; and in 2022, 10 African countries, including Nigeria, in the Kigali Communique outlined 7 principles for just and equitable energy transition.
Transitions are a common phenomenon, as the energy market is constantly evolving, driven by advancement in technology, government policy, resource depletion, scarcity and most critically, sustainability. The ravaging climate crisis that has bedevilled all continents has further reinforced the criticality of the transition as immediate actions to reduce carbon emissions and mitigate the impact of global warming are required.
Africa’s energy sector still faces a huge challenge: how to provide reliable electricity for over 640 million people out of an estimate of 1.4 billion (2023 estimate), while containing carbon emissions. Currently, the continent only produces 3% of global greenhouse emissions, although it is home to one fifth of the world’s population.
Energy transition in Africa requires significant investments in renewable energy infrastructure, policy and regulatory frameworks that supports the transition, and innovative financing mechanisms to attract private sector investment at an estimated cost of $100 billion per annum between 2020 and 2040.
Various African countries have already started the energy transition journey, with notable progress in the deployment of renewable energy technologies. For instance, Morocco has made significant strides in the development of its renewable energy sector, with the construction of the world’s largest concentrated solar power plant and ambitious plans to generate 52% of its electricity from renewables by 2030. Similarly, Kenya has made significant investments in geothermal energy, which currently accounts for over 48% of the country’s electricity generation.
In Nigeria, the key question is how do we position ourselves to the vantage point of a nation with abundant energy resources, working assiduously to diversify its energy resources, develop domestic resources, enhance energy efficiency, and strengthen our infrastructure?
Our natural gas reserve which is the largest in Africa and 9th globally, is considered the most viable means to meet the climate change commitments. It is important that we must emphasise that while climate change is an existential threat, our energy poverty and our development is also a major threat. And so, we must find a way of balancing it. This will involve a faithful implementation of our Energy Transition Plan, which involves the implementation of the decade of gas proposals.
PLATFORM Petroleum Ltd is privileged to be one of the sponsors of the African Collaboration Session at this year’s OTC. I bring you the warmest felicitations from our Board, Management and Staff of Platform Petroleum Limited, a Nigerian content brand and a prominent indigenous player in the marginal field space, having won its flagship asset, the Umutu/Asuokpu Marginal field (renamed as Egbaoma Field) in the 2003/2004 marginal field bid round.
We were the first in that class to bring our field to production in 2007. In 2010, together with Shebah E&P and Maurel & Prom, we formed Seplat, a Special Purpose Vehicle to acquire onshore assets in the first divestments by Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC). Today Seplat has grown to become one of the largest energy companies on the African landscape, listed on both the Nigerian Stock Exchange and the London Stock Exchange.
As a responsible operator, we have sweated the Egbaoma asset, producing about 12 million barrels of crude oil and condensates and 100 billion standard cubic feet of associated gas in the last 15 years. We are very proud to also achieve full gas commercialisation on our asset, supplying about 30 million standard cubic feet of gas per day to the local market through CNG offtakers and via the NGC’s OB3 Gas pipeline network.
Over the last year, Platform has acquired interests in three marginal fields which will take us closer to our near-term aspirations to grow production to circa 10,000 barrels of Oil and 50 million standard cubic feet of gas per day. In addition, we have deepened our presence in the LPG space by increasing our equity interest to 45% of PNG Gas Limited, a foremost LPG producer with production of circa 30 tonnes of LPG per day.
We hope to have a better understanding of the challenges and opportunities in the energy transition journey in Africa, and proffer actionable strategies to accelerate the transition towards a sustainable and just energy future. end of this session
I commend PETAN for all efforts in promoting our participation, and the opportunities for networking and showcasing Nigeria’s potentials in the oil and gas industry. The conversations must continue, and as one of Africa’s largest oil producing countries, the world is looking to us to drive the growth, innovation and prosperity needed in the industry.
The hour, my father always said to me shall find the man. So here, I say, the hour shall find the solution. The hour is now and I believe the solution is in this room because in this gathering are some of the finest brains you can find in any human head. The silent eloquence of your discussions today shall reverberate round the world and strike a resonance with the expectations of our now global village. So please let the conversations begin in earnest.
Again, you are all welcome.