AUTHOR: Bunmi Aduloju
The Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited says official drilling operations for the first oil well in Nasarawa will commence in March 2023.
Mele Kyari, group chief executive officer (GCEO), NNPC Limited, disclosed this on Friday during a visit by a delegation of prominent Nasarawa indigenes, led by Abdullahi Sule, the state governor.
Kyari said available data confirmed the presence of hydrocarbons in Keana, a local government area in Nasarawa state.
The NNPC GCEO noted that the discovery is in continuation of hydrocarbon exploration activities in Nigeria’s inland basins.
He called for immediate action on the project as the global energy transition is leading to reduced investment in fossil fuels.
“This work must be done very fast because the whole world is walking away from fossil fuel due to energy transition, the earlier you go to market, the better for you,” Kyari said.
“Otherwise, 10 years from now, no one will agree to put money in the petroleum business except it comes from your cash flow.”
He further said community support and an enabling environment are key to successful operation in the region to avoid the Niger Delta experience.
Kyari added that once the Keana well proves successful, it has capacity to transform the potentials of the state tremendously.
The NNPC, in a document, had said it was prospecting for crude oil in more locations across the north, including Nasarawa, after discovering the commodity in Bauchi and Gombe states.
The national oil firm said it was taking coordinated steps for more frontier exploration in the region, as part of measures to shore up the country’s oil output and reserves.
Beyond the north, the Anambra basin was listed as another area where the NNPC is striving to find more oil.
Prospecting is the first stage in discovering the oil and gas field, under which seismic surveys are carried out.
Photo- NNPC GCEO Mele Kyari and Nasarawa State Governor Abdullahi Sule