Norway Supports Filipino Farmers With Solar-Powered Water Pumps

A farming community in Calapan Oriental Mindoro, in the Philippines is now enjoying a worry-free future in terms of rice productivity and sustainability with the turn-over of the solar-powered water pump project providing much-needed irrigation in Barangay Santa Cruz this year.

Dubbed “Agos para sa Masaganang Ani,” this solar-powered water pump project is being undertaken by sustainable crop nutrition solutions specialist Yara Fertilizers Philippines, Inc. (Yara), in cooperation with the Royal Norwegian Embassy.

Its goal is to bring down the cost of irrigation in the barangay, which currently uses traditional water pumps running on diesel fuel. The project would result in better profitability and secured yields for the farmers plus reduced CO2 emissions as the pumps will no longer rely heavily on diesel fuel to draw in water and irrigate the land.

During the formal inauguration of the project, Norwegian Ambassador Christian Halaas Lyster shared that the government of Norway has always been supportive of projects that align with its advocacies such as climate change, environmental protection, and food security.

“Norway gives priority to increasing food security and transitioning to renewable energy. This project does both at the same time. We hope this pilot project is something that can be scaled across different regions of the Philippines, to ensure increased food production while decreasing the overall carbon footprint”, Ambassador Lyster said.

The embassy has provided a PHP 4-million grant for the project through Yara, which was used to source and install 16 units of solar-powered water pump that would benefit 55 farmers servicing 80 hectares of rice fields. Based on the current configuration, one water pump unit can irrigate up to five hectares of land.