The Federal Government is taking significant steps towards providing intervention funds to advance the development of methanol fuel technology.
This strategic move is poised to unlock a path for national progress and innovation. The Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation (FMSTI), Sen. Adeleke Mamora, made this announcement during a roundtable interactive session with the Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI).
The event, organised by the FMSTI, aimed to engage with the business community and discuss the feasibility studies for the widespread adoption of methanol fuel technology in Abuja. The event was themed “Enhancing Business Opportunities for a Methanol-Driven Economy”.
This initiative aligns with President Buhari’s agenda and his recent presidential order to create 100 million jobs within a decade. The utilisation of methanol’s extensive value chain for industrialisation plays a pivotal role in achieving this ambitious goal.
Emphasising the FMSTI’s statutory obligation to facilitate and deploy science, technology, and innovation, Mamora underscored the manifold benefits of introducing methanol fuel in the country. The primary advantages include improved electricity supply, reduced carbon footprint in transportation, and the creation of over 40 million new jobs.
“In its unwavering commitment to leveraging technologies for Nigeria’s socio-economic development, the Federal Ministry of Science, Technology, and Innovation has undertaken various projects and activities to bolster our national climate action,” stated Mamora.
He further highlighted the notable initiatives taken by the FMSTI, including the National Technology Needs Assessment and Associated Action Plan for Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation in Nigeria’s most vulnerable economic sectors. Additionally, the presentation of the National Technology Action Plan (NTAP) received the Federal Executive Council’s approval on May 3, 2023.
Other significant endeavours, include piloting the deployment of cutting-edge hydrogen fuel cells technology using methanol as feedstock for electricity supply in Nigeria, signing a memorandum of understanding (MoU) between a South African and a Nigerian company for technology and skills transfer, and supporting the scaling up of technological start-ups through a $2 million GEF grant. The Federal Government has also provided a counterpart fund of $2.7 million.
Mamora stressed that these FMSTI initiatives will offer solutions to Nigeria’s pursuit of green industrialisation, massive job creation, and tackling the impact of climate change, ultimately aiming to achieve a net-zero position by 2060.
The director of environmental science and technology (EST) at the ministry, Dr. Peter Ekweozor expressed the ministry’s commitment to create an enabling environment for ACCI council members to drive the business aspects of methanol production. He also highlighted that the ministry has conducted a comprehensive feasibility study for the methanol value chain in Nigeria.
Furthermore, Ekweozor revealed that the ministry is working on implementing hydrogen fuel cells using methanol in the near future.
The president of the Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI), Dr. Al-Mujtaba Abubakar emphasised that methanol production serves as a viable alternative energy source in the country.
He explained that Nigeria, being abundant in natural gas deposits, should leverage this resource to transition and fortify its economy.
Abubakar went on to disclose various benefits of methanol, including job creation, technology development and domestication, electricity generation, clean household energy services, the chemical industry value chain, reduction in pulmonary diseases among women and children, efficient transportation services, the cessation of gas flaring, among others.