Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) Group Managing Director Dr. Maikaniti Baru, has restated the mandate of president Muhammadu Buhari to the corporation for the continued hydrocarbon search in the Benue Trough to further boost the country’s production.
Speaking while receiving a delegation from the Benue State Government in Abuja, Baru said the president had directed the NNPC to begin immediate hydrocarbon exploratory activities in the Benue Trough as part of efforts to guarantee energy security of the country.
Baru also pledged to deepen collaboration with the Benue State Government (BNSG) on the Ethanol project which is geared towards production of biofuels for energy sufficiency.
Baru noted that ethanol when blended with Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) otherwise known as petrol would ensure excellent performance of vehicles, stressing that energy sufficiency and proficiency were part of the cardinal objectives of the NNPC.
The leader of the Benue State delegation, Chief Terwase Orbunde, commended the NNPC for resolving the recent fuel supply challenges and pledged the readiness of the state government to support the quick take off of the Ethanol project, adding that the project would generate jobs for Nigerians.
Orbunde assured the NNPC of full support and cooperation from the state government and the host communities, stressing that the state government fully identified itself with the energy policy of the Federal Government.
NNPC initiated a renewable energy programme in August 2005 which is in conformity with the Kyoto Protocol agreement to which Nigeria is a signatory.
The primary aim of the programme is to link the agricultural sector with the Oil and Gas Industry.
It is also aims at gradually reducing the nation’s dependence on imported gasoline, reducing environmental pollution as a result of consumption of wholesale fossil fuel as well as creating a commercially viable industry that can boast of sustainable domestic jobs.
A similar programme in Brazil has a thriving biofuels industry providing quantum economic benefits including creation of hundreds of thousands of employment opportunities for nationals of that country.