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Electricity in Nigeria in 2022

Global Ranking: #135
27.5% #111 Low-carbon electricity
17.18 watts #192 Generation / person
368.54 gCO2eq/kWh #81 Carbon Intensity
None Electricity imports

Nigeria's current state of electricity consumption is significantly underpowered compared to global standards, amounting to a mere 17.18 watts per person in 2022, significantly less than the global average of 412 watts per person. The country's power usage is heavily reliant on fossil fuels, with gas generating 12.1 watts per person, and a staggeringly low coal contribution of 0.33 watts per person, summing up to 12.45 watts of electricity per person from fossil fuel sources. The reservoir of low-carbon energy stands at 4.72 watts per person, with hydropower holding the lion's share at 4.69 watts per person. Solar and biofuels make nearly negligible contributions, generating only 0.03 and 0.01 watts per person respectively. Given these low levels of electricity generation, the country's developmental and industrial growth are likely constrained, and citizens' health and quality of life might be adversely affected by lack of reliable access to electricity. Nigeria has historically neither imported nor exported electricity.


To elevate their capacity of producing clean, low-carbon electricity, Nigeria can draw lessons from several nations that have built success in this arena, particularly with an eye to the similarity of power generation mechanics that can adapt to Nigeria's geographical setting. A particularly instructive example can be Denmark, where wind power generates a formidable 369 watts per person. With a significant coastline and regional wind patterns, there's considerable untapped potential for wind energy in Nigeria. Similarly, solar energy, a nearly non-existent segment in the country's current energy mix, could expand dramatically, inspired by countries such as Australia where solar generation has been impressively lifted to 147 watts per person – again, Nigeria boasts substantial solar energies ready to be harnessed.


Nigeria's history of low-carbon electricity correlates with the tumultuous journey of hydropower since the early 1980s. After a slight decline in the early '80s, there was a steady but modest increase in hydropower during 1984-1988. However, the following decades showed a wildly fluctuating pattern, with sharp falls in 1993, 2000, 2006, 2008, 2009, and 2011, troublingly undermining the generation stability. There were also phases of growth, such as in 1992, 2002, 2010, and 2016, but the overall trend did not show a promising rise – when seen against the backdrop of the broader timeline, the struggle to significantly enhance hydropower generation is clear. The latest year, 2022, has seen a net positive change of 0.8 TWh in hydropower generation, possibly indicating a promising direction for the future of the country's green energy stream.

Data Sources

For the years 1980 to 1989 the data sources are EIA and IEA (imports/exports).
For the years 1990 to 1996 the data source is IEA.
For the years 1997 to 1999 the data sources are EIA and IEA (imports/exports).
For the years 2000 to 2022 the data source is Ember.