As part of its commitment to environmental sustainability and efforts at reducing carbon emission, the Nigerian Breweries (NB) Plc has inaugurated a solar power plant at its Ibadan brewery.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Governor Seyi Makinde inaugurated the 663.6kwp solar power plant on Thursday in Ibadan.
It also reports that the solar power plant will supply approximately 800MW of solar electricity to the brewery annually at a significant discount to the company’s cost of power.
The solar plant is also expected to reduce the company’s CO2 emissions by more than 10,000 tonnes over the lifespan of the plant.
NAN reports that the solar power plant, which comprises 1,680 solar panels installed on the roof of the brewery, could light up 560,000 60watt bulbs for 24 hours and could brew 13.3 million bottles of Star lager beer.
Makinde reiterated his administration’s commitment to provision of enabling environment for businesses to thrive, promising more efforts at improving investment base of the state
He said the first quarter business survey indicated that the state maintained positive outlook despite the national challenges.
“The over 2000 surveyed companies across the state showed an over 70 per cent positive outlook and confidence. So, we plan to build on these positives to continue to foster enabling business environment.
“Let me also mention that in the coming year, while still remaining focused on the building and maintaining infrastructure across the state, we are looking to expand the investment base,” he said.
He appreciated the contributions of the company to the development of the state, seeking the company’s partnership on the development of the state’s tourism sector.
Chief Kola Jamodu, chairman, Nigerian Brewery Plc, said the company remained committed to winning with Nigeria and playing its role as a responsible corporate citizen.
He said the company’s partnership with the state government had seen it invest hundreds of billions in community development and social infrastructure such as road, education, water to mention a few.
“We decided to use it as the pilot to demonstrate our firm commitment to environmental sustainability by making a major financial investment to establish this solar power plant.
“This will help us reduce dependence on diesel and dependence on all other fossil fuel,” he further said.
Jordi Borrut Bel, NB managing director, said the company was the first to inaugurate a solar plant on its premises to provide renewable clean energy.
He said the solar project was expected to have a lifespan of approximately 10 years, allaying fears that the new project could cause job losses at the company.
“It is my hope that we will not be the last. It is my hope that other companies and other brewers will take a cue from us, and do the same to protect and preserve our environment.
“We have not only invested in being number one in sales and profitability, we also want to be number one in environmental sustainability.
“Over the lifespan of this project, it is expected to reduce carbon emissions from our Ibadan brewery by over 10,000 tonnes.
“I think this is an opportunity to create new jobs because this is new technology combined with old technology,” he said.
Also, Sade Morgan, the company’s corporate affairs director, said the company was working to achieve carbon neutrality in production by reducing its overall carbon emissions by 30 per cent by 2030.
“The solar power plant we commissioned at the Ibadan brewery of Nigerian Breweries Plc is extremely significant because we are now officially going to be brewing the majority of our product in this location, using solar energy.
“This is very important because it aligned with our ambitious sustainability agenda. This actually enables us to expand by introducing solar energy in our production process,” she said.
She said the company would save costs on diesel, electricity and apply all savings to the expansion of the business.
The company said it was working with its suppliers and partners to achieve carbon neutrality across their full value chain by 2040.
It said that reducing its carbon emission involved transitioning to cleaner forms of energy within the breweries, adding it had hit the ground running with its very first solar plant in Ibadan.
The NB Plc also said it was exploring powering its breweries situated in suitable climates with alternative energy from wind, biogs and hydro-electric energy.