The Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC) has stressed that an abundance of opportunities still remained to be harnessed in the country’s oil and gas sector despite the current global energy transition to net-zero carbon emission.
The NUPRC stated that it would drive the exploitation of these opportunities by addressing key issues that would facilitate growth, stability, and sustainability in the country’s oil and gas industry by collaborating with stakeholders to enhance the gains of recent reforms in the industry and ensuring a shift in the regulatory landscape.
These were disclosed by the Chief Executive Officer of NUPRC, Mr. Gbenga Komolafe, in a presentation he made during the NUPRC Strategic Dialogue with the industry titled: “Fundamental Shift in NUPRC in a Time of Transition.”
Komolafe also said the commission had set for itself the target of growing Nigeria’s oil reserves to 40 billion barrels by 2030 and is poised to grow Nigeria’s gas reserve to 210 TCF by 2030 and raise the country’s oil production capacity to three million barrels per day and gas production capacity to 12 Bscf within the same time frame of 2030.
He also stated that the shift from fossil fuels to greener energies would have implications for developing nations, which would struggle to cope with the trend even with abundant resources while the already developed nations would have a good head start.
He said: “Developing nations will struggle to develop even with abundant resources. All nations are jointly held responsible for the environmental impact of fossil fuels. Oil-producing nations with appropriate economic models may escape a lot of impacts but oil-producing nations without the appropriate economic model may be the worst hit despite huge fossil resources.
“Also responsive nations without the appropriate economic model can make a shift even in the short time available.”
The chief executive of NUPRC also said the Petroleum Industry Act 2021 (PIA) marked a turning point in the country’s oil and gas landscape.
Komolafe specified that the roles of the commission under the new dispensation in the Nigerian oil and gas industry include being the regulatory agency responsible for the technical and commercial regulation of upstream petroleum operations; and administration of petroleum laws and statutes as well as implementing upstream policies on oil and gas activities in Nigeria.
The commission’s roles, according to him, covered, “supervision and monitoring of all upstream petroleum industry operations carried out under licenses and leases in the country,” as well as “promoting an enabling environment for investment in upstream petroleum operations.”
He said that NUPRC would also, “ensure compliance with a commercial and technical legal framework to ensure efficiency, transparency, and fairness.”
It would also “optimise government takes from the hydrocarbon resources; administer and manage oil and gas acreages and concessions in Nigeria,” and drive the “conservation of and sustainable development of the nation’s hydrocarbon resources; maintain a Nigerian petroleum industry data bank,” he said.
Komolafe stated that the commission would be focused on the development of regulations, environmental remediation fund; field development plan; reserves and production growth; accelerated reserves investments; asset stewardship for global competitiveness and cost-per-barrel profits and capital efficiency aimed at ensuring growth and cutting costs.
The commission would also focus on, “facility engineering initiatives; de-risking of frontier basins, grid system for acreages, decommissioning and abandonment fund; host communities development trust; gas development and monetisation; the impact of COP26 and our response as well as addressing crude oil theft,” he said.