By Meletus Eze
Nigeria houses about 2.6 per cent of the 6832 Trillion Cubic Feet (TCF) of the global gas reserve, according to the Nigerian Gas Association (NGA).
NGA President Dada Thomas disclosed this at the association’s 11th International Conference and Exhibiton in Abuja with the theme ” Shift to Gas Economy, Pace and Scale of Innovation in the West African Sub-region.
“According to the latest BP Statistical Review of World Energy Report published in June 2018, the World Gas Reserves is about 6832TCF at the end of 2017.
“Africa’s share of this is 488TCf (7.1%) while Nigeria’s share is about 184TCF or 38% of Africa’s reserves and 2.6% of global reserves,” he said
He said that Africa produced only 7.8TCF or 6.1% the 129TCF produced globally in 2017, of which Nigeria produced 1.65TCF or 1.2 per cent of global and 21 per cent of African production, respectively.
He noted that of the total global consumption of 128TCF, Africa and Nigeria only accounted for 5TCF (3.8%) and 0.55TCF (0.4%), respectively.
“This should be a source of concern for all of us. Wealth is created not by the resources you own but how effectively you use the resources.
“There is a direct correlation between power consumption and GDP.
“Assuming that some 23 per cent of global primary energy consumption was from natural gas in 2017, then there is a correlation between gas consumption and GDP.
“This is even more so for Nigeria where currently some 80% of grid power is generated from gas fired power plants.” he added.
Thomas said that West Africa region with its 200 million people, forecast to grow to 410 million by 2050, must accelerate the use of gas to power its economy and nations.
He said that the Nigerian Gas Policy approved in June 2017 was aimed at making the country gas-based industrial nation by giving primary attention to meeting local gas needs and developing significant presence in international markets.
The NGA president noted that the policy should also move Nigeria from a crude oil export-based economy to an attractive oil and gas-based industrial economy.
On promoting regional gas development, he said: “I believe that gas should be viewed from regional and not just national perspective.
“It is indisputable that countries in the West African region are intimately linked to each other in many different ways.
“Thus, there is need to initiate the dialogue at the national and business levels of how to develop a West African Regional Gas Master Plan that would serve as the roadmap for each member country to develop or modify and roll out its own Gas Master Plan.”
He said that the West African Gas Pipeline was a good example and platform upon which to scale up such plans and commended the Federal Government’s plan to build the Nigeria-Morocco Gas Pipeline.
The NGA said president called for support of such encouraging initiatives for the development of a West African Regional Gas system, infrastructure and market.