Solar energy versus water tables

What would you choose: Earn Rs. 93 by selling power to grid or Rs. 250 by selling pumped water to neighboring farms.

“Since May 10 this year, when this solar co-operative began supplying power to the grid, farmers have been switching off their solar power pumps after irrigating their farms. The excess solar power generated by the solar panels at their farms was getting diverted to the grid, thus providing them a supplementary income. However, finding this income too minuscule some of them have started to keep their irrigation pumps working overtime and supply water to farmers who don’t have irrigation facilities. Pravin has been selling water to at least 20 neighbouring farmers using his pumps. “The rate fixed in the power purchase agreement is pretty low. The government should pay us more,” he feels. Ramabhai Chavda, another member of the cooperative, sells water, said a family member.”

““For irrigating one bigha, we need about four hours and 20 units of solar power. If we switch off our irrigation pumps and supply the power to the grid we will earn about Rs 93. However, if we sell the water from our tubewells to the neigbouring farmers, we end up earning Rs 250 for the same four hours,” said Parvin Parmar, a member and secretary of the cooperative.”

Read full article:  Gujarat solar co-operative sells water instead of electricity.

 

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This entry was posted in Agriculture and farming, Economics and public policy, sustainability. Bookmark the permalink.

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