Distribution of SIPs in India (1 dot = 100 pumps)

The Government of India launched the “Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission” (JNNSM) in January 2010. The JNSSM overall target of 100 GW of grid-connected solar power by 2022. SIPs formed only a small portion of JNSSM work in the early phases due to the high cost of installation.

The Government of India released the “National Solar Pumping Scheme for Irrigation and Drinking” in 2014, with a target to support 1 million SIPs by 2020-21. In 2018, the Government of India announced its Kisan Urja Shakti evam Utthan Mahabhiyan (KUSUM) program for solarizing agriculture. Currently, there are over 200,000 solar irrigation pumps in India.
Gujarat launched a scheme called Surya Kisan Yojana (SKY) to solarize electric feeders supplying electricity to groundwater tubewells. So far, around 80 or so SKY feeders has been solarized. Solar project with work in Gujarat in close collaboration with GERMI to understand institutional aspects of the SKY scheme.
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National Conclave on PM KUSUM: Accelerating Transformative Energy Security for Indian Agriculture

On 7th June 2024, the Ballroom at Shangri-La, Bengaluru, Karnataka, hosted the National Conclave on PM KUSUM, organized by the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy. The event was held in collaboration with the State Government of Karnataka and esteemed partners, including the International Water Management Institute (IWMI), International Institute for Sustainable Development, Council on Energy, Environment and Water (CEEW), Center for Study of Science, Technology and Policy, NSEFI – National Solar Energy Federation of India, and SDC. From the team, Darshini and Deepak participated in this workshop.

Trends and Impacts from the electrification of groundwater irrigation in Bangladesh


 Deepak Varshney is presenting “Trends and Impacts from the Electrification of Groundwater Irrigation in Bangladesh.” Photo Credit: Waresul Haque, NGO Forum for Public Health

Deepak Varshney, Anurag Banerjee, and Adil Mizan presented at the Bangladesh National Forum held on the 6th of March 2024 in Dhaka. The presentation focused on ‘Trends and Impacts from the electrification of groundwater irrigation in Bangladesh’, addressing two major objectives –

i) Access and equity implications of pump electrification,

ii) Impacts of pump electrification on crop diversification and groundwater sustainability.

Promoting Gender Equality and Social Inclusion: 2023 Annual CGIAR Gender Research Conference  

Participants on the last day of the CGIAR Annual Gender Conference

The 2023 Annual CGIAR gender research conference was held in New Delhi from October 9-12, 2023. The event was co-hosted by the CGIAR Gender Impact Platform and Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) and held at the ICAR Convention Center at the NASC Complex, New Delhi. The conference theme, From research to impact: Towards just and resilient agri-food systems tackled the inequalities brought on by Covid-19, climate change, conflict, food crises and unequal gender dynamics that hinder response in agri-food systems. The conference focused on building capacity for gender-transformative change. It was attended by solar researchers and communications team.
IWMI-ATREE Assess Farmer Responses to Solar Irrigation in Joint Study
The International Water Management Institute (IWMI), in collaboration with the Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment (ATREE), conducted a comprehensive study to assess farmer responses to solar irrigation. Combining insights from both agent-based modeling and expert consultations, the study suggests that sustainable transitions—alterations in crop selections that maximize profits while reducing irrigation water requirements—remain a viable possibility. However, in practical terms, the introduction of solar irrigation, under the assumed conditions, is unlikely to trigger substantial crop transitions within the studied districts. This is primarily attributed to deep-rooted entrenchments in agriculture, where farmers and the entire ecosystem they operate within adhere to specific production techniques and choices, making it unlikely for them to deviate from established norms. Furthermore, biophysical constraints related to land and water availability further limit the scope of available choices.Read full report here>>
IWMI-IRMA conduct Assessment Study of Mukhyamantri Saur Krishi Vahini Yojana (MSKVY)
The International Water Management Institute (IWMI), in collaboration with the Institute of Rural Management (IRMA), conducted a rapid assessment of the Mukhyamantri Saur Krishi Vahini Yojana (MSKVY) initiated by the Maharashtra State Government in June 2017. MSKVY is designed to promote tail-end solar plants near substations, with the ambitious target of achieving an installed capacity of 5000 MW by 2025, with the State’s generation and distribution utilities serving as implementation partners. One intriguing revelation from the study was the enhancement in voltage quality during daytime power supply following the introduction of the scheme. Additionally, the study observed that farmers’ irrigation needs were met with reduced power supply durations. To further accelerate the scheme’s success, the study proposes several recommendations, including the adoption of a leased mode for land procurement, tariff adjustments, incentivizing implementation through Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL), and considering rotation-based supply if meeting the total agriculture load becomes challenging. Read full report here>>
Learning from solar micro-grid exercises in Gujarat
The SoLAR-SA project in Nepal is planning to implement a Micro Gird (MG)-connected Solar Irrigation Pump (SIP) pilot in 2022. The Indian state of Gujarat, which has an impressive renewable energy portfolio, has already carried out similar projects on a much bigger scale.
Pretesting Household Questionnaires for SIP Impact Evaluation Study in Gujarat
From 21st to 24th March 2022, Yashodha Yashodha, Post-doctoral Fellow, IWMI,ex-India country Lead travelled to Ahmedabad, Gujarat, to pre-test the household questionnaires for an impact evaluation study of various feeders under the Suryashakti Kisan Yojana (SKY) in Gujarat.
Exploratory Telephonic interviews with SKY farmers in Gujarat yields insights into the functioning of the SKY scheme.
The state of Gujarat in India has rolled out Suryashakti Kisan Yojana (SKY)- a grid-connected solar pilot program in agriculture supported by..
IWMI signs contract with India Natural Resource Economics and Management (INREM) Foundation.
Expanding on International Water Management Institute’s (IWMI) mission to provide sustainable and climate-friendly water solutions globally, IWMI..
IWMI signs contract with Network for Engineering and Economics Research and Management (NEERMAN).
Expanding on International Water Management Institute’s (IWMI) mission to provide sustainable and climate-friendly water solutions globally, IWMI..
Field Visits In Gujarat.
From 28-30 July 2021, field visits were carried out in four feeders, viz., Parmeshwar and Gadhliya in Botad district and Ishnav and Panchalipura in Anand district of Gujarat.
Field Insights on Grid-Connected Solar Scheme in Gujarat.
Among the grid-connected solar pilots that have been executed in India, Suryashakti Kisan Yojana or the SKY scheme is the largest pilot program in the agricultural sector.
IWMI Signs Agreement with Ashoka Trust For Research In Ecology And Environment (ATREE).
IWMI signed a 10-month contract with the Bengaluru-based Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and Environment (ATREE) as a part of its SDC-SoLAR project.
IWMI Signs Contract with Institute of Rural Management (IRMA).
The International Water Management Institute (IWMI) has entered into a 9-month contract with the Gujarat-based Institute of Rural Management Anand (IRMA) as a part of its SDC-SoLAR project.
IWMI signs Agreement with Gujarat Urja Vikas Nigam Limited (GUVNL).
IWMI signed an agreement with Gujarat Urja Vikas Nigam Limited as part of its SDC-SoLAR project. This agreement shall be in place for three years that commence in November 2021.
Field Visits in Botad and Anand.
From 30 November-2 December 2021, researchers from IWMI visited four feeders, viz., Parmeshwar and Gadhliya in Botad and Ishnav and Panchalipura in Anand, Gujarat.
IWMI conducts extensive field visits in Gujarat.
To assess farmers’ perception of the Government of Gujarat’s SKY scheme (Suryashakti Kisan Yojana), IWMI researchers visited various feeders in a host of villages spread across the districts of Anand, Mehsana, Surendranagar and Bharuch in December 2021.
Contact information
Varshney (Country Lead- India)
Researcher – Impact Assessment, IWMI-New Delhi

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