FG Unveils CNG Plant In Lagos

On Thursday, the Federal Government inaugurated a 5.2 million standard cubic feet per day Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) plant in Lagos, aiming to mitigate the impact of petrol subsidy removal on Nigerians. The plant, located in the Isolo Industrial Area, Ilasamaja, was established through a partnership between NNPC Gas Marketing Limited and Transit Gas Nigeria Limited, a subsidiary of Axxela.

Minister of State for Petroleum Resources (Gas), Ekperikpe Ekpo, commissioned the plant under the theme ‘From Gas to Prosperity: CNG for All’. During the inauguration, Ekpo highlighted the significance of this development, marking it as a critical turning point in the country’s pursuit of affordable, sustainable, and secure energy sources. He emphasized that this move aligns with the broader national strategy to diversify energy sources and reduce dependency on traditional fuels.

Ekpo described 2024 as a historic year for Nigeria, noting that President Bola Tinubu’s bold decision to eliminate fuel subsidies has paved the way for significant changes. By promoting the acceptability and wider use of gas, the government aims to introduce new beginnings in the energy sector, positively affecting the lives of many Nigerians. Establishing the CNG plant is seen as a step towards achieving these goals, providing a more stable and economically viable energy solution for the country’s future.

“Although the elimination of the Premium Motor Spirit subsidy has brought difficulties, it has also given us a once-in-a-lifetime chance to invent and adopt more economical, efficient, and sustainable energy alternatives,” the Minister stated.

Ekpo noted that the use of CNG as a transport fuel is a mature technology used globally as it is the cleanest burning fuel in terms of Nitro-oxide and soot emissions.

While it can be employed to power passenger cars and city buses, CNG passenger vehicles emit 5-10 per cent less CO2 than gasoline-powered vehicles, the minister added.

Earlier in his remarks, the Group Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited, Mele Kyari, said to maintain energy security and provide more access to CNG by the Nigerian populace, NNPC reached a final investment decision with Axxela Limited to deliver six CNG mother and service stations plants and stations of 5.2mmscfd capacity each, in selected locations spread across the six geopolitical zones including the FCT to ease access to bulk CNG.

He stated that the move was in addition to NNPC Retail’s phased deployment of CNG in over 100 stations across the country as well as other joint venture partnerships on CNG.

In particular, Kyari revealed that the commissioning of the NNPC CNG Station in Ilasamaja was part of NNPC’s efforts to grow domestic gas supply and utilisation by deploying gas infrastructure nationwide.

He said the Petroleum Industry Act explicitly mandated NNPC to promote domestic gas utilisation, thereby strengthening the company’s resolve to deploy critical gas infrastructure projects across the country.

“NNPC will continue to deliver more strategic projects for the benefit of our country. We shall utilise our gas resources for industrialisation, power generation, and economic prosperity for all,” Kyari stated.

In his speech, the Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu said the establishment of the CNG plant aligns perfectly with his vision for economic development, job creation, and industrialisation in the State.

He said in demonstration of its resolve to champion CNG utilisation across Lagos State, the State Government has concluded plans to deploy 2,500 conversion kits and over 2,000 new CNG buses, which will commence operations before the end of the year.

The Ogun State Governor, Dapo Abiodun, represented by the State Commissioner of Environment, Mr Ola Oresanya, said the state is supporting capacity building in CNG conversion to ensure sustainability and promote economic development within the state and beyond.

In his goodwill message, the Chief Executive of the Presidential CNG Initiative, Michael Oluwagbemi described the plant commissioning as a testament to President Tinubu’s commitment to providing sustainable energy solutions for Nigerians.

The CEO of Axxela, Bolaji Osunsanya thanked all the stakeholders especially the NNPC for its consistent vision towards the delivery of the plant, stressing that his company’s many years of preparation have now met a golden opportunity to deliver cleaner, cheaper energy to Nigerians.

The NNPC CNG Station Ilasamaja is a 5.2MMscf per day capacity station that can serve vehicles and also supply gas to industries and other companies.

The Facility has dispensing points for filling cars, buses, trucks, and tricycles, utilising CNG, and can fill about 3,700 cars or 600 trucks/buses every day, thereby providing a constant supply of CNG.