The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) reports indicate that those who are least responsible for climate change are also the most vulnerable to its projected impacts. In no place is this more evident than in Sub Saharan Africa, where greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions are negligible from a global scale. In Africa, energy demands could be the major factor that may lead to the increase of its emissions in the very near future. Forests are being used up for domestic energy supply. Oil produced energy increases carbon foot prints and hydropower is unreliable due to uncertainties in rainfall patterns. By 2004, the energy consumption mix of West Africa was dominated by oil (58%), followed by natural gas (38%) and hydroelectric (8%) with coal and other energy forms not part of the mix. The Sayigh’s universal equation is presented in this work, for estimating the global solar radiation analysing data from 1972 to 2004 in Nigeria using Umudike, as a case study. The global solar radiation within the region was noted to range from 1.99 to 6.75 kWh indicating that the method could be used in producing signatures of global solar radiation in Nigeria when actual measurements are not available.
Key words: Solar radiation, modelling, West Africa, Nigeria.
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