Solar-powered water technologies are increasingly in demand in developing countries, as they can provide a cost-effective solution to increase agricultural productivity.
Access to water for irrigation is key to many small scale farmers in order to sustain their livelihoods and food security. Running such irrigation systems is still extremely challenging. There are still no electricity grid-extension in many rural areas in many developing countries. In the absence of a reliable electricity supply, farmers have to resort to diesel-based pumping systems. These systems create high operating costs, often experience service gaps, contribute to GHG emissions, and contribute to the energy bill in countries that do not produce such fuels.
Therefore renewable energy options, and in particular solar power, seem a very promising solution for sustainable agriculture in regions with high-solar-insulation, given its environmental advantages, low maintenance and increasingly low investment costs.
Yet, until recently, solar irrigation had not generated a lot of interest amongst governments, farmers and development agencies. However, as investment costs are being reduced and due to climate change concerns, a renewed attention in this technology. It seems therefore timely to take stock from the existing experience on solar irrigation, in order to derive conclusions and recommendations regarding its future use in developing countries.
The overall goal of this international workshop was to take stock and identify key challenges and constrains for the development of solar-powered water technologies in developing countries.
- A stock take of experiences and existing tools.
- An assessment of the potential, constraints and challenges of solar powered water technologies in agriculture in developing countries.
- A set of recommendations on how to expand the use of solar powered water technologies.
- A network of experts/institutions to develop, share, adapt and build capacity on affordable and sustainable water technologies in agriculture.
- A document containing the conclusions and recommendations of the workshop.
Download the workshop programme >>
View the presenters biographies>>