World’s First Solar Irrigation Cooperative | Fusion - WeRIndia

World’s First Solar Irrigation Cooperative

World’s First Solar Irrigation Cooperative

These farmers in a Gujarat village have made the world’s first solar irrigation cooperative. Six farmers from Dhundi village in Gujarat’s Anand made it. They call it the Dhundi Saur Urja Utpadak Sahakari Mandali (DSUUSM). They received help from International Water Management Institute (IWMI), a Colombo-based non-profit scientific research organization.

The cooperative solar plan involves farmers cooperating with each other to get solar power to run irrigation pumps for their fields. They also sell the surplus energy from the solar panels to Madhya Gujarat Vij Company Ltd. (MGVCL). This project is also called Solar Pump Irrigators Cooperative Enterprise (SPICE).

This cooperative was started in February this year. Raman Parmar, a 45-year-old farmer is the main inspiration for this project. He started by replacing his diesel pump with a solar powered irrigation pump for his crops.

Raman realized the benefits of solar power when he started using it. Initially he used to spend Rs. 500 a day on fuel to irrigate his 12 bhiga land. Later he ended up earning Rs. 7,500 in four months by selling excess power to the grid.


Pravin Parmar, a 29-year-old farmer says that the six farmers managed to sell 5,000kWh of surplus solar energy to Madhya Gujarat Vij Company Limited (MGVCL).

IWMI also encouraged farmers to shift to solar power for several months. It takes about 80 square meter land to set up an 8kWh grid-tied solar power generation system. The additional power generated can be sold when the pump is not being used. They get Rs. 4.63 per kWh. This means, instead of spending money on their farm for irrigation, they earn money.

The current capacity of the solar cooperative is 56.4kWh. There are plans by IWMI to expand it to 100kWh. They already signed an agreement to sell up to 100kWh to MGVCL.

Image Reference: TheBetterIndia

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