The Universal Energy Facility (UEF) – a results-based financing facility managed by Sustainable Energy for All – has announced that it will provide grants to renewable energy companies which applied to have their projects financed as part of the facility’s Stand-alone Solar for Productive Use programme in Nigeria.
These companies will now begin construction on their proposed solar projects, all of which are designed to connect businesses and services to a clean, affordable and reliable electricity source.
The projects will span most states in Nigeria and be completed within the next 12 months.
A statement issued by Anita Otubu, Senior Director, Universal Energy Facility, said the projects would, together, connect approximately 3,500 businesses, markets, shopping malls, cold-storage facilities, clinics, schools, and other productive uses of energy, which are uses that support economic activity and community infrastructure.
As stand-alone solar energy projects, they will alleviate the need for businesses and services to rely on expensive, polluting fossil fuel generators as their source of power. The UEF estimates that approximately 5,400 tons of CO2 equivalent per year will be saved once all of the proposed projects are implemented.
The statement quoted Damilola Ogunbiyi, CEO and Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Sustainable Energy for All as saying: “With this programme in Nigeria, the Universal Energy Facility will demonstrate the enabling power that sustainable energy can have on local economic development and climate action.
“Solar projects supported by the facility will give businesses clean and affordable electricity to help them scale up, create jobs, and replace polluting power sources.”
Last year, the Nigerian Government launched its Energy Transition Plan showing how the country will achieve universal energy access by 2030 and net-zero emissions by mid-century, as well as the finance required to meet these goals. The UEF is contributing to the plan’s finance targets for the power sector by providing grants that companies can leverage to attract additional finance for clean energy.
The Stand-alone Solar for Productive Use programme in Nigeria opened for applications in August 2022 and received expressions of interest from hundreds of energy developers.
“Within just a few months of opening this programme in Nigeria, we are now at the point where grantees have been selected and companies can start building transformative stand-alone solar projects,” Otubu added. “The Universal Energy Facility is proving the effectiveness of results-based finance to catalyse energy development at speed and scale.”
“The Universal Energy Facility will provide grant payments to enable solar companies to expand their operations to small and medium-sized enterprises across Nigeria, while crowding-in additional private capital,” said Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.