The Rwanda Rural Rehabilitation Initiative (Rwarri) has just launched a solar irrigation project in Ngoma district. It aims to improve the livelihoods of 24,000 farmers in the Zaza and Mutenderi sectors.
The Rwanda Rural Rehabilitation Initiative (Rwarri) provides a solution to the water stress problem for Rwandan farmers. This is sustainable irrigation using solar water pumps. The non-governmental organisation recently launched a solar irrigation project in the Ngoma district of Rwanda.
According to Rwarri, two solar-powered water pumping stations and two clay stone reservoirs of 500 m3 each will be installed in the Zaza and Mutenderi sectors in Ngoma. The facilities will improve the livelihoods of 24,000 fruit and vegetable farmers, representing 20 hectares of plantation, and improve their resilience to climate change. These include 1,500 small-scale farmers and 900 producers of “high value-added” crops, including 600 women and 300 young people.
A 260 million Rwandan franc project
As part of its project, Rwarri will also provide practical training on sustainable agriculture and the operation of green technologies. The aim is to increase farmers’ productivity. “Currently, to produce vegetables during the 3 months of the dry season, the farmer spends about 600,000 Rwandan francs (almost 500 euros) on fuel for the generator used to pump water up the hillside. These expenses are very high for a farmer working in the Zaza or Mutenderi areas, which is why we farm our land for only two seasons instead of three”, explains Rwarri.
The implementation of the Ngoma solar irrigation project will require an investment of 260 million Rwandan francs (nearly €217,000). The Rwanda Green Fund (Fonerwa) will provide part of the funding, 168 million Rwandan francs (more than 139,000 euros) to the initiative.