Nigeria needs 2.4 million litres of biodiesel daily to successfully implement the Paris Agreement on climate change, the Jatropha Growers, Processors and Exporters Association of Nigeria (JaGPEAN) says.
The national president of JaGPEAN, retired Major General J. Omosebi, stated this at the second interactive meeting of the national and state executives of the association in Abuja, The Eagle Online reports.
Omosebi said the demand had underscored the need for massive domestic production of jatropha, which is a rich source of biodiesel, to meet the required feedstock to implement the agreement.
He explained that the association had plans to mobilise farmers to cultivate 100,000 hectares of jatropha farm nationwide in 2017 and 2.5 million hectares within the next five years.
President Muhammadu Buhari signed the climate change agreement on behalf of the country in New York in September.
Buhari had expressed the country’s commitment to cut greenhouse gas emissions unconditionally by 20% by 2020.
To achieve this objective, the country is expected to blend 20% of biofuel into every litre of diesel and petrol to be consumed in the country before the deadline.
Already, the Ministry of Petroleum Resources has started reviewing and updating the country’s biofuel policy to boost local production and uptake of the critical product.
This, according to the JaGPEAN national president, is a huge business opportunity for players in the jatropha value-chain, especially farmers.
“Currently, about 12 million litres of diesel are consumed daily in Nigeria. Blending with the stipulated 20% biofuel means that the country needs 2.4 million litres of biodiesel daily or 876 million litres annually to successfully implement the agreement,” Omosebi said.
“Currently, the data of available jatropha oil in the country is very insignificant compared with the quantity required for this policy. Therefore, there is need for massive cultivation of jatropha to meet the required feedstock to implement the policy.”
The JaGPEAN national president said it was important for the association to support the federal government’s biofuel policy because it was favourable to the farmers.
He commended the government for accommodating the interests of the association’s members in the policy review, which they had been praying for over the years.