PTDF records breakthrough in research on zeolite

The Petroleum Technology Development Fund (PTDF) says its breakthrough research on Zeolite (refining catalyst), development from Kaolin sources is a deliberate and strategic approach to providing solutions to specific industry challenges.

The Executive Secretary, PTDF, Dr Bello Gusau, said this on Thursday, in Abuja at the Annual Oloibiri Lecture Series and Energy Forum conference 2022 (OLEF) of the Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE).

The 2022 conference has its theme as “Global Energy Transition: Implications on Future Investments in the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry”.

Zeolite catalyst is an important chemical substance for petroleum refining and for a variety of applications in the petrochemical industry.

Gusau, represented by Mr Jide Adebulehin, General Manager, Strategic Planning, PTDF, urged relevant stakeholders to partner with the Fund in the development of a pilot plant for the said Zeolite production.

According to him, the Fund, under section one of the PTDF Act has the power to develop, promote and implement petroleum technology and manpower development through research and training of Nigerians in relevant Oil and Gas fields.

The executive secretary, while stating that the PTDF had implemented these mandates for the past 20 years extended an open invitation to anyone who wished to partner with PTDF in this regard.

Speaking on energy transition, he underscored the need for training, technology development and capacity building as important enablers to realise the goals and aspirations of energy transition in Nigeria.

He said the Energy and Petroleum Industry was in dire need of technology and skills to increase its viability and profitability.

“In the wake of the energy transition, especially to the enhancement of skills and technology development, capacity building will be at the front-burner when it comes to discussions of energy transition in the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry,” he said.

He said in a recent publication, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) projected a nearly 50 per cent increase in worlds energy use by 2050 led by growth in renewable energy.

“Although it is envisaged that petroleum and other liquid fuels will surely remain the world’s largest energy source in 2050, renewable energy sources, which include that wind and solar will grow to nearly the same level,” he said.

Based on this projection, he said future investments in the Nigerian oil and gas industry may decline due to the global push for clean energy.

According to him, currently, Nigeria’s Petroleum Industry contributes approximately 80 per cent of the Federal Government’s revenue and 90 per cent of Nigeria’s export earnings.

He however said it had become very important that we started thinking of alternative sources of energy outside fossil- based system of energy production and consumption (including oil, natural gas and coal).

He said more attention should be paid to renewable energy sources like wind and solar, as well as lithium-ion batteries.

“Furthermore, the industry is struggling to recover from the negative effects of COVID-19 pandemic and amid this slow recovery; it is faced with hikes in oil prices as a result of the current war between Russia and Ukraine.

“Ordinarily, the sharp rise in crude oil prices from less than 60 dollars per barrel last month to as high as 120 dollars per barrel presently is what should benefit the country.

“But the poor state of Nigerian refineries makes it very difficult to maximise gains as in the case of other oil-producing nations around the world,” he said.

He expressed assurance of PTDF’s unalloyed commitment to continue to support the activities of SPE going forward.