Socio-economic problems, exposure to climate change and internal conflicts are some of the factors that have fuelled the country's crisis in recent years. North-eastern Nigeria in particular has long been at the centre of a humanitarian crisis caused by the violent Boko Haram movement and shrinking of the Lake Chad basin, the main water source for local communities. The crisis has triggered significant migratory flows and informal settlements have grown both in the north-east and in the Abuja Federal Capital Territory (FCT), to which many people are fleeing. This being the case, the Federal Government of Nigeria has asked energy companies in the country to contribute through sustainable initiatives in the affected areas, and that is why, in 2018, we signed a three-year Collaboration Agreement with FAO (the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization). The aim was to contribute to the humanitarian activities to help internally displaced people (IDPs) and host communities affected by the Lake Chad crisis, as well as to promote access to clean, safe water in the country by building wells powered by photovoltaic systems.
As part of the partnership with FAO, we have undertaken a total of 22 solar-powered water schemes since 2018: 5 in the Abuja Federal Capital Territory and 17 in northeastern Nigeria (5 in the state of Borno, 5 in the state of Adamawa and 7 in the state of Yobe). During March 2022, we delivered 11 in the states of Borno and Yobe. Overall, the initiative helps to improve sanitation for approximately 67,000 people. As pointed out by Alberto Piatti, Eni’s head of Sustainable Development in the Natural Resources department, the delivery of water systems will facilitate local development, improving the life of communities.