Thursday, November 18, 2021 – GGGI, as part of the implementation of the “Promoting solar powered irrigation project” in Uganda held a demonstration session to showcase different solar powered irrigation pumps to 200 smallholder farmers in Zirobwe, on the outskirts of Kampala. The project is a two-year intervention funded by the Government of Denmark and implemented by GGGI, with the aim to create greater access to finance and irrigation technologies for farmers and other marginalized populations, including youth and women, who are involved in agricultural practices.
In recent years, Solar-Powered Irrigation Systems (SPIS) have become increasingly attractive as a reliable, clean-energy solution for agricultural water management, especially in areas with low elevation topography and high solar radiation incidence levels. With investment costs for solar-powered irrigation systems decreasing, SPIS technologies are helping farmers to have year-round production amidst the current unpredictable weather conditions.
GGGI partnered with SolarNow, one of the leading solar technology providers in Uganda, to organize and deliver this demonstration session, as part of the first activities aimed at raising awareness of SPIS. This demonstration session will soon be followed by four days of technical training for farmers, to build their capacities on solar-powered pumping and other climate smart agricultural practices.
GGGI implements the project through formation of strategic partnerships with farmer groups like the Zirobwe Agaliawamu Agribusiness Training Association (ZAABTA) which was the beneficiary of this activity. As an agribusiness association with over 5,000 members and access to almost 20,000 farmers, ZAABTA encourages its member farmers to transform their agricultural practices with the aim of increasing productivity, create jobs build resilience against the impact of climate change on agriculture. Therefore, the demonstration and subsequent training on CSA and irrigation will benefit the smallholder farmers through achieving greater yields and increased income from all-year productivity.
The team from GGGI gave a general introduction about GGGI and the Denmark funded SPIS project which is aimed at promoting solar powered irrigation amongst the small and medium holder farmers. During her opening remarks, the Country Representative, Ms. Dagmar Zwebe, emphasized the need to work with communities to promote climate agricultural practices and build resilience to climate change in the agricultural value chain.
The Management of ZAABTA led by Mr. Godfrey Mayambala, welcomed GGGI and SolarNow teams to their premises and applauded the work being done by GGGI in coming up with interventions that are aimed at launching the agricultural sector to a greener pathway. SolarNow then took the center stage through a presentation and an on-garden demonstration of how the SPIS works, operation and maintenance requirements of the equipment, and capabilities of the pumps, among other topics.
GGGI will hold additional demonstrations and technical training sessions for other farmer groups across the country within the upcoming year.