Only 27, 000 Nigerian homes were connected to hydropower sources between 2014 to 2021.
This is according to the December 2022 off-grid renewable energy statistics report by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA).
According to the report, Nigeria also recorded steady growth in solar energy connections during the period highlighted.
Solar lights less than 11 watts: The data showing the number of people using solar lights less than 11 watts in Nigeria revealed a steady growth over the years from 2012 to 2021.
In 2012, it was 117,000 people.
In 2013 it was 382,000 people.
As of 2014, the number had risen to 674,000.
Meanwhile, by 2015, the number of connections had grown to 1,450,000 people.
By 2020, 2,652,000 people were connected to solar lights less than 11 watts.
By 2021, the number had grown to 3,516,000 people.
Solar home systems between 11 and 50 watts: Between 2013 and 2021, there was reported growth in the number of people using solar home systems (SHS).
In 2013, 26,000 people were connected to solar home systems between 11 and 50 watts.
As of 2018, 464,000 people were connected to the highlighted solar home systems.
By 2020, there were 847,000 people were connected to the highlighted solar home systems.
And by 2021, 813,000 people were connected to the highlighted solar home systems.
Tier-1 solar mini-grids: The data revealed that the number of Nigerians connected to tier-1 solar mini-grids grew from 14 in 2012 to 78,000 in 2018 and has remained at 78,000 through 2021.
According to the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), tier-1 mini-grids have over 1-watt peak capacity and provide the least amount of electricity with the most restrictive hours of use.
The hours of supply under tier-1 mini-grids range from over 4 hours during the day and over 2 hours in the evening. Those under tier-1 mini-grids can access task lighting (increased lighting for specific tasks like sewing), radio and phone charging.
Tier-2+ solar mini-grids: The data revealed that the number of Nigerians connected to tier-2 solar mini-grids and higher grew from 54 in 2016 to 91,000 in 2019 and has remained the same through 2021.
Tier-2 mini-grids have over 20-watt peak capacity and provide over 4 hours during the day and 2 hours in the evening. However, those on tier-2 mini-grids can access general lighting, television, computing, radio, phone charging, air circulation, printing, and task lighting (increased lighting for specific tasks like sewing).
The data shows that a lot has been achieved in Nigeria’s renewable energy space. However, the country still needs to focus on developing relevant renewable energy policies that will increase stakeholders’ capacity to develop large-scale solar energy projects with minimal bottlenecks. This will close power supply gaps that still exist in Nigeria, especially in unserved and underserved areas.