Chineme Okafor in Abuja
The 252 megawatt-capacity Gbarain Ubie power plant being built by the Niger Delta Power Holding Company (NDPHC) under the National Integrated Power Project (NIPP) would be ready for commissioning by the end of first quarter 2017, the Managing Director of NDPHC, Mr. Chiedu Ugbo has said.
Ugbo said recently during the inauguration of the presidential initiative on solar homes systems in Wuna Village Gwagwalad Abuja, that the completion and commissioning of the plant would add additional 252MW to Nigeria’s generation capacity.
Work on the plant which has Rockson Engineering as its engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contractor has stalled for a long time now.
But speaking to the Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo at the event, Ugbo said: “Your Excellency, strategies are also in place to complete the second unit of the Gbarain power station in Bayelsa State before the end of this quarter. This will add 225MW to the grid.”
“In November last year, the Honorable Minister of Power, Works and Housing, commissioned the 12-circuit Ikot-Ekpene 330KVA Switching Station and the associated transmissions lines with a total of about 285KM completed by our new management. These projects are now assisting in evacuating into the national grid, electricity hitherto stranded in the Eastern Delta,” he added.
Also, arrangements for gas supply to the plant may have been taken care of with a pledge by Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) that it would solely supply gas to the 252MW gas turbine power station.
In a 2015 paper titled: ‘Shell in Nigeria: Unlocking Nigeria Energy Potential,’ SPDC stated that it would single-handedly supply gas to the 225MW Gbarain power plant.
It said in the paper: “Shell will be the sole supplier of a new 225 megawatts power plant being built in Gbarain by the Federal Government under the Nigerian Independent Power Project.
“In 2010, SPDC began producing from the Gbarain-Ubie integrated oil and gas plant in Bayelsa State. Gbarain is designed to process one billion standard cubic feet of gas per day. In addition to supplying gas to the Nigerian Liquefied Gas (NLNG), Shell also supplies gas to the Bayelsa State power plant at Imiring.”
The paper further indicated that the Gbarain Ubie plant was helping SPDC reduce flaring of associated gas from nearby gas fields, thus contributing to its wider flares reduction programme.
“The Gbairan Ubie project has created a legacy of skills and capacity in complex gas projects, which will be vital in meeting Nigeria’s electricity supply challenges in the years ahead,” it added in the paper.