UNDP and Ministry of Water Resources and Electricity Initiate the Use of Solar Water Pumps for IrrigationJan 24, 2017
Northern State, Sudan- January 24th 2017 -The Ministry of Water Resources, Irrigation and Electricity, and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) have initiated today the first stage of implementing a solar water pumps project for irrigation in the Northern State.
The “Solar for Agriculture” project is a 5 year project implemented in the Northern State of Sudan with a total budget of USD 4.89 million, thanks to generous contribution from the Global Environmental Facility (GEF).
This project starts with a pilot phase of installing 28 solar pumps covering the 7 localities of the Northern State focusing primarily on installation in agricultural areas that are not accessible by the National Electrical Grid. The selection of villages was conducted by the Northern State’s Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Associations.
Resulting in energy stability and the creation of green jobs for many, this project plays a catalytic role in scaling up the use of solar power for agriculture in Sudan through improving livelihoods for famers and creating links with financial institutions and the private sector.
Throughout the five years of its implementation, around 1000 solar pumps in Northern State are to be installed in alignment with efforts to scale up; and support two important national initiatives in Sudan: a) The Sudan Solar for Development and welfare Initiative and b) Zero Thirst Initiative.
UNDP Country Director Mr. Selva Ramachandran attended the celebration marking the kick off of the project in Dongola where he affirmed UNDP’s commitment to pursue developmental projects that provides durable enregy solutions by stating “This project comes as the starting point for a transformational process towards clean and renewable energy in Sudan as stated in Goal 13 of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG)s. UNDP Sudan will continue to work with our national partners to expand this project and to provide solar energy for the health sector in near future. I think this project presents a great opportunity for irrevocable change in the lives of famers and pastoralists who are in need of effective solutions for their daily challenges.”
For his part, Minister of Agriculture of the Northern State, Mr. Talal Essa Osman stated that “Thanks to this project, farmers will now be able to plant all year round. In the past, we are only able to plant in winter. Here, electricity is one of the biggest challenges facing the state because of its high cost and the technical difficulties in accessing villages and distant islands. We would like to firmly thank UNDP and Ministry of Water Resources, Irrigation & Electricity for their tremendous efforts which I believe will boost the productivity of the people of the state.”
Under-Secretary of Ministry of Water Resources, Irrigation & Electricity Mr. Musa Omer Abulgasim, further commended UNDP’s approach to to providing clean , sustainable and affordable energy to all by saying “Renewable energy has great benefits for the people of Sudan and this will defiantly have a huge impact on the productivity level of the state. We hope that UNDP can also assist in supporting the implementation of other sources of renewable energy such as wind and hydro power to reach cities all across Sudan.”
Globally, UNDP’s development interventions in energy sector focuses on promoting actions to support the transformation to low carbon pathways and addressing climate change related issues. In Sudan, UNDP’s development agenda focuses on building resilience for adaptation to climate change, addressing challenges related to the underutilization of Sudan’s renewable energy sources and building national and institutional capacities for better environmental management and climate change activities.
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