India to swap traditional irrigation pumps for solar-powered

Feb. 10, 2014

NEW DELHI — The government is planning to change over 26 million pumps to solar-powered pumps, saving energy and fuel.

NEW DELHI — India's government is planning to swap out 26 million fossil fuel powered groundwater pumps used by the country's farmers for more efficient solar powered pumps, according to an article by Bloomberg.

The move would save the government $6 billion per year in power and diesel subsidies and potentially increase crop production by removing the reliance on power and fuel, the article reported.

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Companies producing solar-powered pumps in the Indian market include SunEdison Inc., Jain Irrigation Systems Ltd., Claro Energy Pvt. and Tata group, noted the article.

“The potential is huge,” Tarun Kapoor, joint secretary at India’s Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, said in an interview. “Irrigation pumps may be the single largest application for solar in the country.”

Farmers will use water-saving drip irrigation in exchange for subsidies to buy solar water pumps, continued the article, to avoid using excessive amounts of water with the new, zero-operating-cost solar pumps.

Read the full article here.