By Progress Godfrey, Abuja
The Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC), has unveiled the Regulatory Framework for Energy Transition, Decarbonisation and Carbon Monetisation for Upstream Operations in Nigeria, at the ongoing United Nations Climate Change Conference 2023 (COP28) in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
The Commission Chief Executive (CCE), Engr. Gbenga Olu Komolafe announced this during his Keynote Address at a roundtable discussion themed “Driving Sustainable Upstream Operations to Achieve Just and Equitable Energy Transition”.
During the ensuing discussion, Claire Wang, Office of the U.S Special Presidential Envoy on Climate Change, Martina Otto, Head of Climate & Clean Air Coalition, United Nations Environment Programme, Jonathan Banks, Global Director, Clean Air Task Force, and Mrs. Funmi Ogbue, Managing Director, ZIGMA Oil and Gas exchanged ideas on how Nigeria can attain climate neutrality through energy transition and the implementation of decarbonisation measures.
The CCE said the Commission is championing the decarbonisation of upstream operations to sustain investments for energy security and economic development for the benefit of Nigerians in line with national aspirations and consistent with the UN SDGs.
Engr. Komolafe stated that the Framework was hinged on seven pillars which are; Natural Gas Shift, zero routine gas flaring & methane abatement, carbon market development, technology and innovation, upstream operations efficiency, incentive mechanism, collaboration and risk management
“I call on all stakeholders, government agencies, operators, international development partners and multilateral agencies to join us as we progress the steady implementation of the Framework within the coming months, which will be underpinned by applicable Directives, Guidelines, and Regulations,” declared the Upstream Regulator Chief.
“Interestingly, the implementation of the Regulatory Framework has already commenced on the heels of the introduction of the Gas Flare, Venting & Methane, Prevention of Waste and Pollution Regulations 2023 which provides the renewed legislative basis to take firm actions on gas flaring, venting and fugitive emissions”.
Similarly, the implementation of the 2022 Guidelines for Management of Fugitive Methane and Greenhouse Gases Emissions in the Upstream Oil and Gas Operations in Nigeria, which was launched at COP27, is achieving commendable outcomes.
Furthermore, the Commission Chief Executive highlighted the success of the ongoing execution of the Nigeria Gas Flare Commercialisation Programme (NGFCP) as a major climate action initiative for Nigeria in the nation’s energy transition pathway. The NGFCP projects when fully executed will mop up 50% of Nigeria’s flares accounting for an equivalent of 6-7 Million tonnes of CO2 emission per year, in addition to significant socio-economic impacts.
While acknowledging the considerable support of international development partners on the NGFCP, the NUPRC Boss seized the opportunity to call for enhanced assistance from climate action stakeholders in technical areas, project financing/funding, carbon credit earning framework, and capacity building.