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Regulatory Commission inaugurates gas flare commercialisation team

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THE Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC) has inaugurated a 12-member gas flare commercialisation programme team to steer the Federal Government’s initiative to end gas flaring by 2025.

The Chief Executive of NUPRC, Gbenga Komolafe, said while inaugurating the team in Abuja that monetising gas resources was a positive step towards guaranteeing energy security, especially in the global energy transition period.

Komolafe, in a statement issued yesterday, said gas flaring in the industry had continued to be a menace, which needed to be eradicated because of its adverse effects on the environment and people.

He added that wasteful disposal of natural gas was not only fraught with serious health/environmental consequences, but was a major resource waste and value erosion to the country.

Komolafe disclosed that the Federal Government has declared the period 2021 to 2030 as the ‘Decade of Gas’, a period within which the nation must shift focus from oil-centred exploitation to gas-driven industrial development.

“Even though the World Bank has set 2030 as the target year to end gas flaring, Nigeria has not only set a country deadline for 2025, President Muhammadu Buhari has made a commitment towards the Paris Agreement during the 26th United Nations Climate Change conference (COP26) Leader’s Summit to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2060,” he said.

He recalled that the Federal Government had initiated the Nigerian Gas Flare Commercialisation Programme (NGFCP) in 2016 to end flaring of natural gas by oil companies operating in the country.

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He added that though the initiative was well-received by stakeholders and industry watchers, unforeseen constraints had truncated its execution.

Komolafe said, ”As a nation, Nigeria must ensure that it harnessed all available gas resources for value creation.”

He announced that the NUPRC was recommencing the process of issuing flare sites to technically competent companies, following a competitive bid process.

“This process has become crucial in view of the policy direction of the Federal Government to ensure all gas resources are developed for national development,” he added.

The NUPRC chief stated that the Commission was carrying out a study in conjunction with external technical resources to identify suitable flare sites for the auction process.

He said, ”It was for the purpose that the committee of staffers of the Commission was inaugurated to drive the process and coordinate implementation of the programme.”

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Harrison Edeh is a journalist with the International Centre for Investigative Reporting, always determined to drive advocacy for good governance through holding public officials and businesses accountable.

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