NNPC moves to complete gas pipeline repairs


Gas-PipelineHope has risen for increased supply of gas to the nation’s power plants as engineers involved in the maintenance of western axis pipeline has scheduled to complete maintenance next week.

The pipeline, which delivers commercial gas to major power stations, including Egbin plants, the biggest in Africa with over 1,000 megawatts, capacity was vandalised at several points some weeks ago.

A source involved in the rehabilitation of the pipeline that preferred not to be named stated in a telephone interview that, “We have made tremendous progress. Everything being equal, we look forward to completing the work in the third week of January, this year.

He said, “The maintenance would have been completed before now. It was not possible to do so because we discovered that the pipeline was badly vandalised at several points.

The source added, “The expected completion will make it possible for the Nigerian Gas Company, NGC which is a subsidiary of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC to restore gas delivery to many thermal power stations.

Investigations however showed that power generation has reduced substantially as a result of the shutdown of the important facility.

Available data showed that electricity generation has fallen from 4,600 megawatts, mw to 3,464mw, which is far below the 10,000mw estimated daily national requirement.

The Managing Director of Egbin Power Plc, Mr. Mike Uzoigwe said the station was presently generating about 700mw.

A few weeks ago, he said at a lecture in Lagos that vandalism and low gas supply were some of the main problems, which affect commercial electricity generation in the nation.

He said, “If you visit Delta, Sapele or Afam power stations, you will notice several gas turbines lying idle. About three of them installed at Ijora power station by Chief Olusegun Obasanjo’s first regime to supply power to Dodan barracks are also laying waste.

Uzoigwe said, “Other earlier power stations have been decommissioned and do not produce power anymore. Calabar power station is decommissioned, same as Oji and all later installed power stations at Ijora-Lagos.”

Uzoigwe said of the six units of 120 mw each originally installed at Sapele power station, only one remains available and can generate or is available for a maximum of 90mw.


[National Mirror]