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Seplat Energy Commissions Amukpe-Escravos Pipeline

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Seplat Energy grows 2021 full-year gross profit by 128.9% to N114.2bn

Olushola Okunlade Writes

Seplat Energy Plc, a leading Nigerian energy company listed on the Nigerian Exchange and the London Stock Exchange has announced that it has begun commercial injection of crude oil through the new Amukpe-Escravos Pipeline.    

The 67km mostly underground pipeline is expected to provide a more reliable and secure export route for liquids from Seplat Energy’s major assets OML 4, 38, and 41, connecting them with the Chevron-operated Escravos Terminal. It has a capacity of 160,000 bbl/day, of which the Seplat Energy / NPDC joint venture is entitled to inject 35,000 bbl/day. Dewatering was completed on Friday 29 July and the Site Acceptance Test is now underway with commercial volumes.  

Until now, the Company has relied on the Trans Forcados System, which has experienced numerous disruptions in recent years due to pipeline maintenance and vandalism, which have impacted the Company’s revenues. 

Roger Brown, Chief Executive Officer of Seplat Energy, said: “The commercial launch of the Amukpe-Escravos Pipeline is a significant event for Seplat Energy and for Nigeria, offering a more secure and reliable export route that will assure higher revenues and profitability for Seplat Energy, enabling us to make a larger contribution to Nigeria’s economy.

We commend the work that has made this possible and appreciates the efforts of our partners and all contractors involved to create this more reliable and secure export route for Nigeria’s oil.”

About Seplat Energy Plc: Seplat Energy is Nigeria’s leading indigenous energy company. It is listed on the Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX: SEPLAT) and the Main Market of the London Stock Exchange (LSE: SEPL).

Seplat Energy pursues a Nigeria-focused growth strategy through participation in asset divestments by international oil companies, farm-in opportunities, and future licensing rounds. The Company is a leading supplier of gas to the domestic power generation market. For further information please refer to the Company website, http://seplatenergy.com/

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“Going Green Is The Future For Data Centers In Africa” – Jasper Lankhorst

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Going Green Is The Future For Data Centers In Africa

Jasper Lankhorst is the Group CEO of the Best-Connected Carrier And Cloud Neutral Data Centre In West Africa, Rack Centre

Rashidat Olushola Okunlade Writes

The Group Chief Executive Officer of the best-connected Tier III Carrier and Cloud neutral data centre in West Africa, Rack Centre, Jasper Lankhorst, has restated the company’s commitment to the green economy even as it has vowed to continually enhance its drive for sustainability in its operations.

Jasper Lankhorst made this known at the just concluded 2022 AfricaCom/Africa Tech Festival in Cape Town, South Africa.

Speaking during the panel session themed “The Importance of Going Green” for the future of Data Centres in Africa. He explained that Rack Centre, part of the pan-African data centre platform, was undertaking a range of measures that are tailored toward green design principles, some of which include switching from diesel to gas power generation, implementing water-efficient cooling systems, implementing low-energy air circulation system and sourcing local materials and services wherever possible.

Going Green Is The Future For Data Centers In Africa

According to him, the organisation is switching its power source from diesel to gas, not only to save more than $10 million a year in operating costs but also to reduce carbon footprint, reduce environmental impact and align with global sustainability data centre design trend.

“As a result of these moves, Rack Centre is forecasted to be 35% more energy-efficient than other regional data centres, and 16% more energy-efficient than the global average. It will reduce water consumption by 41%, and there will be a 45% saving in embodied energy in materials used,” he said.

He further noted that, though customers are demanding a sustainable strategy for the business, hence, the choice of going green, though capital-intensive, should be sustainable. They must be as energy efficient as possible and use reliable, low-carbon sources of power to ensure uninterrupted operations, which is in line with the organisation’s prime aim to provide 100% uptime.

Other notable panelists at the session include Mustapha Louni, Senior Vice President, Uptime Institute; Nikki Blake, Business Development Manager for Bergvik; Kevin Kent, Director of Data Center Business Development nZero; Dr. Angus Hay, Regional Executive, Africa Data Centres, and Divyajeet Mahajan, Chief Executive Officer, Distributed Power Africa (DPA), Zimbabwe.

In addition to the existing Rack Centre LGS 1 data centre in Lagos, which supports 1.5MW of IT power, our campus is now being expanded with a new building, the LGS 2 facility which supports 12MW of IT power. This provides a total IT power of 13.5MW in the Nigeria campus, built using modern, efficient and green design architecture. We have a principle known as KIA – Keep In Africa, and it’s a philosophy we use in our design and the procurement process to make it sustainable with the availability of local knowledge and local skills to be able to build and operate it,” he added.

In June 2022, Rack Centre became the first International Finance Corporation (IFC) EDGE-certified data centre in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. It is officially making this the first Green Certified Data Centre in Africa. It is the most connected facility in the region according to its PeeringDB ranking and links every country on Africa’s Atlantic coast.

In 2019, the Southern Swamp Associated Gas Solutions project was commissioned, and the SPDC JV is planning to reduce associated gas flaring further through its Forcados Yokri gas-gathering project, of which large parts are set to be completed in 2022. Despite such efforts to reduce continuous flaring, unfortunately flaring intensity (the amount of gas flared for every tonne of oil and gas produced) at both SPDC- and SNEPCo-operated facilities increased in 2021 owing to short-term operational issues. Flaring from SPDC-operated facilities increased by around 5% in 2021 compared with 2020. The increase was primarily because of the extended outage of the gas compression system in SPDC’s shallow-water operations. The system was restored and became operational from January 2022. Flaring at SNEPCo-operated facilities rose by around 160% in 2021 compared with 2020. This was mainly because of an increase in flaring on the Bonga floating production, storage and offloading (FPSO) vessel. Repairs to a flex-joint on the Bonga FPSO’s gas export riser in the second quarter took longer than expected, in part because of weather conditions. While repairs were under way, the FPSO continued to produce oil and therefore flaring was necessary for safety reasons. The repairs were safely concluded in July 2021. Although flaring intensity levels rose in 2021, SPDC and SNEPCo over the last 10 years have almost halved the combined amount of hydrocarbons they flare from 1.5 million tonnes in 2012 to 0.8 million tonnes in 2021. This reduction is the result of a strict flaring reduction management process and both SPDC and SNEPCo will continue to work in close collaboration with joint-venture partners and the government to make progress towards ending routine flaring of associated gas. NIGERIA LNG EXPANSION UNDERWAY Global demand for LNG continues to grow as the world increasingly seeks reliable supplies of lowercarbon energy. Shell’s investment in Nigeria’s gas infrastructure for export is expected to help 6 This is according to a data provided by global research and consultancy business Wood Mackenzie. the country benefit further from revenues. Shell Gas B.V. and its partners took a final investment decision in 2020 on a new LNG processing unit – known as Train 7 -- at NLNG. The expansion is expected to create around 12,000 jobs for Nigerians during construction and stimulate growth of the local oil and gas service sector, with 55% of engineering and procurement of goods and services being sourced in-country. Train 7 is expected to ensure Nigeria’s continued place as a global player in a lower-carbon energy source. Once operational, Train 7 will add around 8 million tonnes per annum of capacity to the Bonny Island LNG facility, taking the total production to around 30 million tonnes per annum. In 2021, NLNG began awarding procurement and construction contracts. Early works started at the site. The first phase of the worker village is expected to be ready for occupancy in 2022 and the new material offloading facility ready for use by the end of 2022. NLNG’s Train 7 is expected to come onstream in the middle of the 2020s. KEY LICENCE RENEWED FOR DEEP-WATER SNEPCo has interests in four deep-water blocks in the Gulf of Guinea, two of which it operates. Today, nearly one-third of Nigeria’s deep-water oil and gas production comes from the Bonga and the nonoperated Erha fields.6 Since production began in 2005, Bonga alone has produced more than 950 million barrels of oil with the 2021 average oil production per day at 105,000 barrels. The Bonga FPSO vessel has a total production capacity of 225,000 barrels of oil per day and 150 standard cubic feet of gas export per day. In 2021, the availability of the FPSO vessel increased to 80% from 70% in 2020. In addition to Bonga, SNEPCo’s exploration activities have led to several significant discoveries of oil and gas over the last two decades, including the Bolia and Doro fields (Shell interest 55%). Nigeria Briefing Notes Helping to power Nigeria’s economy 13 In the right investment climate, SNEPCo believes that there are opportunities to expand. In 2021 the OML 118 (Bonga) production sharing contract was renewed and the lease extended for 20 years. Bonga North and Bonga South West Aparo (BSWA) oil fields are two such potential opportunities. Bonga North is a proposed tie-back project to the existing Bonga FPSO with Phase 1 comprising 14 wells. BSWA is a development of a new FPSO with Phase 1 comprising 23 wells. SUPPORTING RENEWABLE ENERGY STARTUPS Millions of Nigerians are excluded from the country’s power grid and Shell Companies in Nigeria have established and provided substantial funding for a not-for-profit, impact-investing company called All On. Operating as an independent company, All On works to bring reliable electricity – often from renewable energy sources -- to off-grid urban and rural customers. This support aims to build a solid pipeline of viable businesses that can create the scale required to address Nigeria’s access to energy gap. In December 2019, SPDC and SNEPCo made a significant additional 10-year financing commitment of $160 million in All On, bringing the total commitment to $200 million. By the end of 2021, All On had provided investment capital to over 40 renewable energy start-ups in its portfolio – an increase of more than 30% from 2020. One such company is Infibranches Technologies Limited, to which All On has committed $2 million, which is expected to enable the indigenous technology company to expand sales of solar home systems via its more than 13,000 agent banking partners across Nigeria. With the support of the Rockefeller Foundation, the All On Hub was established in 2020 to provide nonfinancial support and build the capabilities of off-grid energy entrepreneurs. In 2021, the hub supported 81 ventures – nearly double the 41 supported in 2020. Also in 2021, All On, Odyssey Energy Solutions and the Global Energy Alliance for People and Planet launched a $10 million equipment financing facility as part of the DART pilot programme in Nigeria. 7 Hydraulic flying leads support the delivery of hydraulic fluid and/or chemicals between subsea equipment. 8 Subsea trees are an assembly of valves and other components used to monitor and control the production of a subsea well. DART will combine demand pooling, aggregated purchasing of solar equipment, and access to affordable finance to unlock economies of scale for solar companies, achieve cost savings for end-users, and accelerate the growth of the renewable energy sector in Nigeria and beyond. DEVELOPING LOCAL CONTENT AND SKILLS Shell Companies in Nigeria contribute to the growth of Nigerian businesses that can provide technical and support services to the industry. This includes the manufacture of tools and technical kits, the operation of helicopter flights in the Niger Delta, and strategic partnerships between foreign and local companies to stimulate technology transfer and capacity development. While there are government-required programmes in some areas, such as the Nigerian and Community Content Strategy embedded in the Assa North/Ohaji South gas development project, Shell Companies in Nigeria deliberately seek to contract local businesses wherever possible. In 2021, Shell Companies in Nigeria awarded $800 million worth of contracts to Nigerian-registered companies. Of these, 92% were companies with at least 51% Nigerian ownership. SNEPCo has awarded major engineering and construction contracts to companies that are indigenous, have local staff, or possess domestic capabilities in the country. At present, the manufacture and rebuild of hydraulic flying leads7 (HFLs) is being carried out in-country by wholly indigenous companies. Pressure Controls Systems Nigeria Limited, another Nigerian company, continues to refurbish old subsea trees.8 Sometimes, a lack of access to capital hinders Nigerian companies from competing for and executing contracts effectively. Shell Companies in Nigeria have provided access to nearly $1.6 billion in loans to 901 Nigerian vendors under the Shell Contractor Support Fund since 2012. These loans help improve their tendering opportunities.

About Rack Centre: Rack Centre is the best-connected Carrier and Cloud neutral Tier III constructed Facility Certified data centre in Africa. Established in 2012, the company focuses solely on providing best-in-class data centre colocation services and free interconnection between carriers and customers. Knowing this gives customers a technically superior, physically more secure, and lower-cost environment for their information systems.

The Carrier and Cloud neutrality advantage allows customers to manage traffic to get better value, lower latency, and higher resilience and creates an open market for partnerships between customers, networks, cloud and content providers, the Internet Exchange Point of Nigeria, and managed service providers.

Rack Centre’s clientele includes 53+ telecommunication carriers, Internet Service Providers (ISPs), global Tier 1 networks, and pan Africa international carriers, including direct interconnections to all five undersea cables serving the South Atlantic Coast of Africa including Equiano and in the foreseeable future 2Africa and every country on the Atlantic coast of Africa.

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Eko DISCO Assures Customers In Orile, Apapa Districts Of Improved Service Delivery

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Eko DISCO Assures Customers In Orile, Apapa Districts Of Improved Service Delivery

Olushola Okunlade Writes

Eko Electricity Distribution Company (EKEDC) has assured it will upgrade its service delivery in Orile and Apapa environs at customer engagement forums held on November 10 and 17 respectively, in continuation of its strategic plan to engage electricity consumers across its franchise area for improved service delivery based on feedback.

The Managing Director/CEO of Eko DisCo, Dr. Tinuade Sanda, who was represented by the Chief Financial Officer, Joseph Esenwa at the forum said in continuation of the DisCo and stakeholder engagement to get on-the-spot feedback and review for possible upgrades in the areas of power supply, billing, metering, vandalism, and other factors mitigating service delivery to customers.

Mr. Esenwa thanked customers for making time out of their busy schedules to attend the session, ‘’we do not work in isolation, we are here to listen, and share ideas because we believe in a good relationship, it’s a mutually beneficial meeting, we aim to serve you, and we want to know what we have to do to improve our services” he said.

Eko DISCO Assures Customers In Orile, Apapa Districts Of Improved Service Delivery
Left-Right: Gibraltar Njowusi; Apapa Local government Secretary, Madam Oyinlola Lambo; Customer Service Representative, Mrs. Lilian Obiakor; District Manager Apapa, Engr. Ukoh Henry; Head, Distribution Operations, Joseph Esenwa; Chief financial officer, Mr. Sam Edoho; GM Commercial, Engr. Kamaldeen Saadu; HoD Network Planning, Lt. Col. Afolabi Oluyinka; Representative of the Arakan Barracks Cantonment Commander.

Mr. Esenwa said EKEDC has learned from engagement over the years that the major issues between the customers and the company are estimated bills, he said the DisCo has no reason to increase the bills as he described EKEDC as a retailer who purchases electricity in bulk then sends to customers.

For those who are yet to collect their prepaid meters, he said some customers had applied and paid for the prepaid meters under the MAP scheme registered without providing the right biodata when registering for the scheme.

Mr. Esenwa said, “While the commitment to install prepaid meters for customers under the MAP Scheme is critical, we have noticed that some customers provided wrong details including their valid means of identification. There is nothing we can do until they come forward to address the issue.

“Some of the incorrect details include wrong addresses, emails, applicants’ reference numbers, and invalid means of identification. The invalid biodata has delayed the issuance of receipts for the processing of the meters.

He further assured customers in Apapa and Ijora Districts respectively that the DisCo would soon visit the areas under the district to launch the mobile metering exercise for the on-the-spot applications of customers to support the existing online process of acquiring prepaid meters by customers under the MAP scheme.

Esenwa further reiterated that “The Meter Asset Provider Scheme has enabled customers to procure meters directly and be metered within 72 hours of payment confirmation and urged other customers to take advantage of the window to access their prepaid meters.

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CNN’s Connecting Africa Visits Cape Town For Africa Energy Week

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CNN’s Connecting Africa visits Cape Town for Africa Energy Week.

Olushola Okunlade Writes

In the latest episode of Connecting Africa, CNN International’s Eleni Giokos visits Cape Town for Africa’s Energy Week, where leaders gathered to discuss the issue of energy poverty and the transition to renewable energy.  

Verner Ayukegba, Senior Vice President of the African Energy Chamber describes the energy situation, “600 million people without any kind of access to energy, and 900 million people, mostly women, and children, without any access to clean cooking fuelsFrom that perspective, Africa’s energy situation is one where we need to focus on investing significantly into generating power for all of those people. That is why we have decided to champion making energy poverty history by 2030.” 

Coal remains South Africa’s main source of energy. Ayukegba says, “It’s easy to say we wean ourselves off coal. In Africa, we are saying we are for solar as well, but what we can’t do is close all the coal mines. We need solar, but we also need base load, a significant amount of base load, which comes with gas, coal, hydrocarbons, hydro, and all of that. We can’t afford at this stage to discard any of the solutions.” 

Giokos later visits Middleburg Mine Services, in her hometown of Emmaelni which is home to 1,200 employees, to discover how the transition away from fossil fuels will impact local communities and employees. Seriti, one of South Africa’s largest coal producers, employs nearly 20,000 workers across several mines.  

Mike Teke, CEO of Seriti, shares his awareness of the need for an energy transition, “Everybody understands climate change. Everybody understands decarbonisation. Nobody amongst us who run coal mines or who operate in the mining industry are climate denialists.”  

He highlights the differences in energy in Africa and the need to transition strategically, “We operate in a country that is a developing economy, a growing economy. We’re not a developed economy like the United States or some of the countries in Europe. We need to develop our own agenda as South Africa.” 

Teke wants to make sure coal workers are reskilled for the energy transition, “We need to be realistic and say if we were to go into building solar farms, wind farms, hydro, and the light new forms of energy, it’s not going to be one for one the jobs. That is why we transition. That is why we need to reskill our employees to new forms of employment and new skills that will give them a livelihood into the future.” 

General Manager at Just Energy Transition, Eskom Holdings, Mandy Rhambaros, is also prioritising helping the transition of workers, “We are training all our staff at Komati on renewables. Our guys will be retrained and obviously, those that want to stay on to operate and maintain the renewables plants that we will be building will be more than welcome to do so.” 

Priscillah Mabelane is the Executive Vice President at Sasol, a major provider of energy and chemicals. Sasol is committed to the energy transition but, according to Mabelane, the most viable vision for coal is the reduction of its need over time. “At some point into the future, 2050 to 2060 dependency on coal is going to disappear. The question is how do we transition from that? We’ve set ourselves carbon neutrality by 2050. That’s clear. We are changing our mix of energy and replacing coal with renewables. At the same time, we are also ensuring that we are efficient in the way we consume energy going forward,” she says. 

Solar energy is also an alternative energy source with a lot of potentials. The continent is home to 60% of the globe’s solar resources but only 1% of the world’s installed solar capacity, according to the International Energy Agency. 

David Masureik, CEO of New Southern Energy, explains that his company is providing solar energy solutions to a range of businesses in South Africa, Nambia, Botswana, Tanzania, and Kenya. “Our clients range through various sectors, agriculture, manufacturing, hospitality, retail, and property. We very much focus on the commercial and industrial space, so that’s rooftop solar and behind-the-meter solutions. It plays a big part in demand reduction and provides, in the South African context, clients with energy security and cost reduction.” 

Masureik admits, “Whether we like it or not, we have to live with coal for the foreseeable future. Our base load at the moment is heavily dependent on coal.” However, he thinks that with time South Africa will move to a greener future, “I think with more and more renewables coming online, with battery technology coming to the fore on a utility-scale, with peaking plants and things like that coming into play, even green hydrogen, I think we might get to a scenario where actually the baseline will be reduced significantly from coal.” 

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