A blend of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) also known as petrol mixed with ethanol will soon be in circulation, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) hinted yesterday. The corporation declared that it had already begun moves to rejig partnership with the Benue State Government (BNSG) on the multimillion dollars venture. The collaboration on the ethanol project, the corporation said, was geared towards production of biofuels for energy sufficiency.
Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Dr. Maikaniti Baru, according to a statement by the corporation, made this known while receiving a delegation from the Benue State Government at the NNPC Towers in Abuja.
According to Baru, ethanol, when blended with PMS otherwise known as petrol, ensures excellent performance of vehicles. He stressed that energy sufficiency and proficiency were part of the cardinal objectives of the NNPC.
The NNPC GMD revealed that President Muhammadu Buhari had also directed the corporation to commence hydrocarbon exploratory activities in the Benue Trough as part of efforts to guarantee energy security for the country. 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 aimed 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.
Earlier, the leader of the Benue State delegation, Chief Terwase Orbunde, commended the NNPC for resolving the recent fuel supply challenges.
He 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.