Alternative clean energy for sustainable growth and development of the Nigerian telecommunications sector

Abubakar S. Sambo, Abdulsalam S. Mustafa, Nasiru M. Bello


Telecommunications plays a crucial role in facilitating the transmission of voice, data, and multimedia over extended distances. This paper explores the significance of telecommunications, particularly in Nigeria, the largest ICT market in Africa, where telecom and internet usage hold substantial importance. However, the sector's heavy reliance on fossil fuels has resulted in environmental challenges. This research underscores the imperative to transition to clean energy sources, aligning with the commitment of the Nigerian Communications Commission. The paper presents a case study of a solar hybrid system designed to enhance Base Transceiver Station (BTS) coverage, emphasizing notable challenges such as elevated costs and the industry's familiarity with fossil fuels.

The optimal power configuration for a BTS, as identified in the study, features a 16kW PV (photovoltaic) array, 14kW Diesel Generator (DG), 32kWh Battery Energy Storage System (BESS), and Utility, achieving the lowest Levelised Cost of Energy (LCOE) at $0.255/kWh. The production summary for the Solar PV array is 24,767 kWh/year (76%), the Diesel Generator is 1,250 kWh/year (4%), and the Utility is 6,503 kWh/year (20%). Consequently, the total estimated production is 32,520 kWh/year, constituting 100% of the energy requirement for the BTS.

The study proposes solutions to challenges, including local clean energy component production, capacity building, and regulatory alignment. In conclusion, the adoption of clean energy is deemed essential for sustainability, with recommendations for policy adoption and efficient equipment utilisation.


Clean energy, telecommunications, base transceiver station

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