How Netherlands is supporting Nigeria’s clean energy drive to a circular economy – Hanneke Schuiling
Dutch companies and research institutes are interested in supporting Nigeria’s solar energy sector and horticulture industry, which presents opportunities for producing nutritious food and restoring nature and biodiversity.
The Netherlands is committed to assisting Nigeria in achieving its goals of improving living standards, providing electricity access for all, and transitioning to a green economy through aid, trade, and investments.
The event showcased Dutch and Nigerian expertise in clean technologies and aimed to launch collaborations in areas such as solar energy, waste recycling, climate-smart agriculture, and regreening the Sahel. There is potential for Nigeria to convert waste to biogas to meet fertilizer and energy needs.
The Dutch Vice-Minister for Foreign, Hanneke Schuiling, Trade revealed that Dutch companies and research institutes are keen to engage with Nigeria to support the solar energy sector.
He also added that Dutch companies in Nigeria are actively involved in Nigeria’s horticulture sector, which presents a range of opportunities and challenges and also enables efforts to produce nutritious food for everyone while restoring nature and biodiversity.
He disclosed this at the just concluded, Netherlands- Nigeria Clean Tech Event attended by Nairametrics, speaking alongside Wouter Plomp, the Dutch Ambassador to Nigeria, and Dutch Clean Energy businessmen operating in West Africa.
Schuiling noted that Climate change is affecting us all, but in different ways, citing that In The Netherlands, the rising sea level is the threat with the highest impact, adding:
“ In Nigeria, we have all witnessed the terrible news about the floods that killed 600 people and made 1.3 million people homeless last year. Meanwhile, in the North of the country, farmers are suffering from droughts and the drying out of their farmlands.
“Nigeria wishes to improve the standard of living of its citizens, providing electricity access for all and growing the economy. At the same time, you want to transition to a green economy.
“Nigeria wishes to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2060. The Netherlands supports Nigeria in attaining these goals by combining aid, trade, and investments.”
Solar and Horticulture
The Vice Minister also revealed that Dutch companies and research institutes are keen to engage with Nigeria to support the solar energy sector, as one of Nigeria’s most important renewable energy resources, and also in the horticulture environment, saying:
“Recently the Netherlands became the country with the most solar installations per capita in Europe.
“Solar energy is one of Nigeria’s most important renewable energy sources. The reduced cost of solar panels and batteries has made a transition to solar energy more feasible. No surprise, Nigeria is one of the fastest-growing markets for solar energy around the world.
“Dutch solar companies are very interested to scale up their business here. I look forward to hearing about the experiences of the solar companies in this room. They supply clean energy to households and businesses, improve livelihoods and spur economic development at the same time.
“Dutch companies in Nigeria are also actively involved in the horticulture sector, which presents a range of opportunities and challenges. The world’s population is growing rapidly and is expected to rise to 9 billion people by 2050. We are facing a great challenge: we must step up our efforts to produce nutritious food for everyone while restoring nature and biodiversity. As a small country, the Netherlands relies on inventiveness and efficiency in our horticulture sector.”
The Minister added the Dutch Embassy supports the HortiNigeria program which transforms vegetable value chains in Kano, Kaduna, Ogun, and Oyo states, adding that This way, fewer vegetables have to be imported and many jobs and business opportunities are created in Nigeria.
Schuiling added that the Netherlands strongly believes that a transition to a circular economy is part of the solution
The Trade boss noted that a circular economy is an economy in which materials are recycled and offers room for innovation, business opportunities, skilled jobs, and improved quality of life.
“ Also a circular economy is essential for the energy transition which needs a lot of materials and minerals such as lithium and cobalt.
Wouter Plomp, the Dutch Ambassador noted that the purpose of the event was to Showcase Dutch and Nigerian knowledge and expertise in clean technologies and Launch collaborations in the areas of solar energy, waste recycling, climate-smart agriculture, and regreening the Sahel.
“This is only the beginning. Our government looks forward to working more closely together with the Nigerian government, the EU Delegation, companies, research institutes, and all of you here.”
Coen Bakker, founder of Waste Transformers at the event noted that Nigeria can bridge its fertilizer and energy needs by converting waste to biogas, citing his company has commenced operations in Free Town, using waste to power hospitals and schools in Sierra Leone, and also producing liquid fertilizer for farmers.
Full Story: https://nairametrics.com/2023/06/08/how-netherlands-is-supporting-nigerias-clean-energy-drive-to-a-circular-economy-hanneke-schuiling/
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