March 3, 2017

ITP Video: The Promise of Dhundi Solar Pump Irrigators' Cooperative

ITP has argued for a solar irrigation promotion strategy that encourages farmers to grow 'solar power' as a remunerative crop. This ITP-CCAFS video discusses an action-research pilot that demonstrates this idea...

The Promise of Dhundi Solar Pump Irrigators' Cooperative


In early 2016, the world's first Solar Pump Irrigators' Cooperative Enterprise (SPICE) began operations in Dhundi village of Kheda district in Gujarat. Members of this cooperative are using solar power not only to run their irrigation pumps, but also pooling the surplus energy to sell to the Madhya Gujarat Vij Company (MGVCL) under a 25-year power purchase agreement.

Promoted by the IWMI-Tata Water Policy Program (ITP) and supported through a generous grant by the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS), the cooperative was set up to demonstrate a novel model of promoting solar irrigation by incentivizing farmers to conserve energy and water; while at the same time, offering them an additional, stable source of climate-proof income. By December 2016, the 6-member, 56.4-kWp capacity cooperative had already earned more than Rs. 160,000 from sale of surplus energy.

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