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Renewable energy and fossil fuels will continue to rely on each other –Lekoil boss

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Renewable energy and fossil fuels will continue to rely on each other –Lekoil boss

Countries must work out innovative ways in which the potential of both fossil fuels and renewable energy can be harmonised and harnessed until the time renewable energy can stand alone as a major energy source globally, Lekan Akinyanmi, Lekoil’s Chief Executive has said.

Akinyanmi gave the disclosure while speaking on the sidelines of the recently concluded World Economic Forum’s annual meeting at Davos, Switzerland.

There has been an increasing campaign for the reduction of fossil fuel consumption around the world, which environmentalists have blamed for greenhouse gas emission.

“It is possible to keep an oil and gas company sustainable.  The first thing we have got to do is to stop denying that there is an issue. Indeed, there is an issue,” Mr Akinyanmi said.

“The change over from fossil fuel to alternative energy or cleaner fuels is a multi-decade or probably multi-century thing. The fossil fuel industry will still be relevant. I think probably for the rest of our lifetime. What we need to do is to figure out ways to be responsible in the fossil fuel production and consumption process.

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“Historically, a lot of fossil fuel companies have produced oil and flared the gas. But it is actually the gas that is more efficient. It’s friendlier to the environment, so we need to shift our attention there. From our perspective as Lekoil one of the things that help us is that, a good chunk of our portfolio is actually gas so we are actually well on our way.”

According to energy analysts, the renewable energy market will grow at a cumulative average growth rate of 7.6% between 2020 and 2025 to reach 3,812 gigawatts by 2025.  Rising investment and improvement in technology has seen a drastic improvement in renewable energy output.

Between 2020 and 2025, the United States and other developed countries are scaling up investments in renewable energy. However, The Asia Pacific region is emerging as the fastest-growing market for renewable energy globally, accounting for nearly 27% of the global market share. Within the Asia Pacific, China and India together form the leading renewable energy markets having almost 75% of the installed capacity of renewable energy.

In 2018, China heavily invested in renewable energy projects having a total capacity of nearly 696 gigawatts and emerged as the leading country, dominating the global market in three renewable energy technologies, namely, wind, hydropower, and solar energy.

“I think we will make our way through this. Unfortunately, I think there is a lot of brinkmanship,” Akinyanmi observed

“We actually do need an energy mix to solve the world’s energy problems. In the interim there will be discontinuities, the pendulum will swing both ways. But it’s shortsighted to just ignore the fossil fuel industry and move to the renewable energy industry or vice versa. We need a portfolio that mixes both energy sources.”

Lekoil has recently been embroiled in an alleged loan scam after a Bahamas-based consultancy reportedly finagled the sum of $600,000 as service fee for helping it secure a credit facility worth $184 million from Qatar Sovereign Wealth Fund.

The “loan” was intended to bankroll the appraisal drilling and initial development programme works on the Ogo Field within OPL 310 offshore Nigeria.

To buy more time to enable the firm source alternative funding for the oil asset, Lekoil entered into a deal with Optimum Petroleum Development Company, operator of Oil Prospecting Licence (OPL) 310 to postpone its financial and operational obligations due this February.

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