Obasanjo Urges Use Of CNG, LPG As Alternatives To Petrol | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Obasanjo Urges Use Of CNG, LPG As Alternatives To Petrol

Posted: Jun 13, 2016 at 4:31 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

…NIPCO Boss Says Compressed Natural Gas Usage To Save FG $2bn


Charles Okonji

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo at the weekend urged the Federal Government to promote the utilisation of Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) and Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) in the country, as their usage could save Nigeria over N630 billion ($2 billion) annually on foreign exchange.

Obasanjo, who gave the advice during a courtesy visit by the management of NIPCO Plc to Obasanjo Hilltop Estate in Abeokuta to showcase some vehicles running on CNG and LPG, stated that their promotion as fuel for the moment had become necessary because of the need to effectively utilise the nation’s natural endowment.

According to him, CNG, which remains clear, odorless and non-corrosive, could enhance cleaner environment, explaining that that was why he quickly signed the CNG usage during his tenure as the president in 2006, but regretted the low level of awareness given to its utilisation.

The former president said: “If other governments had promoted the use of LPG and CNG in Nigeria, half of the country’s vehicles would have been converted to gas. The essence was to provide alternative to premium motor spirit (PMS) or petrol at a reduced cost and to boost national socio-economic growth.”

Obasanjo added that aside from the economic gains, CNG could help to reduce the unfriendly automobile emissions and expose Nigerians to the innovation of powering vehicles with gas.

The Managing Director of NIPCO Plc, Mr Venkataraman Venkatapathy, emphasised that CNG would save government over $2 billion yearly if used as fuel for vehicles.

Venkatapathy pointed out that globally, various countries had started shifting their focus and efforts towards the development of natural gas for transportation.
While informing that NIPCO’s CNG project was in partnership with the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) through a joint-venture scheme called Green Gas Limited, he noted that the GGL initiative, which is the first of its kind in West Africa, had ushered in a new era of vehicles running on the CNG in Nigeria with its attendant benefits.

He said that CNG was a superior auto fuel alternation to liquid fuels mainly petrol and diesel, especially for countries like Nigeria, which is blessed with abundant natural gas that had remained untapped.

According to him, to replace 20 percent of current petrol consumption of Nigeria, natural gas that would be required would be less than five percent of the total domestic gas consumed currently and less than one percent of the current gas productions.

Venkatapathy said: “This will save the country over $2 billion yearly on foreign exchange. In Benin City, Edo State over 4000 vehicles run on CNG, which resulted in replacing 20 million litres of petrol from 2012 to 2015, which also saved over $9 million to the country.”

NIPCO boss said that CNG had more benefits than petrol, adding that some of the benefits include low operating cost, lower maintenance cost and reduction of harmful vehicle emissions that could cause local air pollution. He said that on mile to mile basis, CNG would be cheaper than petrol by over 50 percent and as compared to diesel (on dual fuel mode) it would be over 45 percent.