The British Government has approved more foreign investments in Lagos state, as a plan is underway for the take-off of the first waste-to-energy plant in the state.
The facility valued at about $150 million would process 2.5 tonnes of waste daily Lagos.
Deputy British High Commissioner in Nigeria, Mr. Ben Llewellyn Jones, gave the official nod at the weekend when he spoke at Igando refuse dumpsite after a guided tour of facilities of West African ENRG alongside state officials led by the Commissioner for the Environment and Water Resources, Tunji Bello.
He stressed that though some people are sceptical about Nigeria’s investment and outlook, waste management offers a huge opportunity. “We will help you and it is a real opportunity here as it is being demonstrated today and even opportunities to grow beyond what is being achieved now which is so fantastic,” he said.
According to him, it is outstanding what is being achieved using British technology, finance and real great Nigerian drive and expertise to create something special that is going to grow.
Bello, while welcoming the team, said the quest of West African ENRG to move from waste to wealth and establishing the first waste-to-energy facility speaks volumes about the conducive business atmosphere in Lagos.
Bello said West African ENRG came to Lagos in 2014 and had its waste conversion plant unveiled in 2015 while the company now plans to set up a waste-to-energy plant.
“There were some intervals of difficulties that we have now successfully overcome. Now, we have been able to restore all that they started with. They have also improved a lot of things. You must have observed during the inspection today a lot of conversion processes from waste to plastics, rubber, cans and bottles,” he stated.
The commissioner said from the brief and visual clips on the proposed project presented by West African ENRG, it was clear that if the organisation could make further progress in waste conversion.
“Lagos has always been a Mecca of investments. What we just need to do is to make sure that infrastructural developments are accelerated and substantial progress is being made in that regard. We have the roads, water and other infrastructural facilities ready”, he emphasised.
While taking the guests round, the Chief Executive Officer West African ENRG, Paul O’Callaghan said his organisation plans to invest about 125 to 150 million dollars to build a 25 megawatts waste to energy facility that would process 2.5 tonnes of waste daily.
“At the moment, it takes 3 to 4 hours in the dry season to tip waste at the open landfill site to the wet season that takes as much as 24 hours depending on the weather. We are committing to under 30 minutes and aiming for 15 minutes turnaround time,” Paul explained.
He said the new project means the PSP will move from houses to the waste to energy facility and within 15min will be back on the streets collecting wastes, thus creating a better economy for the PSP and a quicker and cleaner Lagos state.