The Organisation of Petroleum Producing Countries (OPEC) has called on oil producing countries and in particular, African countries that rely on oil and gas production for revenues, to create an investment friendly climate in order to attract the needed investment for development.
This is more so, in view of the $12.6 trillion cumulative investment requirement through to 2045, crucial to meeting the global energy demands.
OPEC secretary general, Dr. Mohammad Sanusi Barkindo, who presented a keynote address at the 14th annual conference of the Nigerian Association of Energy Economics (NAEE) in Abuja yesterday, noted that to that end, the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) recently signed in Nigeria promises to be a huge success in reviving the fortunes of the oil and gas industry in the country.
“All OPEC Members, including Nigeria, will have to re- strategise to maintain their positions in the new global energy mix, including focusing on economic diversification,” he said.
Speaking on the topic, ‘Strategic responses of oil exporters in Africa to the 2050 Zero Carbon Emissions Target’, Barkindo noted that despite the concerted drive towards energy transition, oil will remain the largest contributor to the energy mix up to 2045 accounting for more than 27 per cent, as indicated to in the latest OPEC world oil outlook.
“It is vital for us to remember that renewables are developing most rapidly, but at the same time, the world’s economy is set to double and all resources will be required to meet this growing need. Investment in 2020 dropped by more than a whopping 30 per cent in the face of COVID-19, even worse than the dramatic declines seen in the severe 2015-2016 industry downturn.
According to him, “Oil has a powerful role to play in the energy transition, and it should not be swept under the rug based on old credentials.”
He said with the help of technology, the industry can become low carbon or even zero-carbon. “This includes technologies already being implemented such as carbon capture, utilisation and storage.
ally, great strides have been made in efficiency gains in the industry, along the entire production chain.
“It is essential that one compares the lifetime credentials of each source of energy in terms of emissions. For example, electric cars may appear cleaner, but emissions are buried in many of the industrial process required to produce them.”
Barkindo applauded Nigeria’s goals to reduce carbon emissions while pursing the UN SDGs, which seek to achieve access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all. Transitioning to a low-carbon energy future may seem to run counter to the socio-economic benefits of energy, in particular to energy-poor countries.