Rural, off-grid farmers in India rely on diesel generators to pump water for irrigating crops. Diesel fuel is expensive and increases the cost of production for smallholder farmers. Additionally, diesel fuel consumption also creates greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. It is estimated that each year farmers consume three billion liters of diesel crop irrigation, leading to eight million tons of CO2 annually.
Claro Energy harnesses the power of sun to replace the diesel fuel pumps used for irrigating crops with solar-powered ones. Considered a pioneer and credited with engineering India’s first modern battery less solar irrigation system in 2011, Claro Energy designs, installs, and maintains distributed solar irrigation systems in farmers’ fields. Typical systems range from 2 kW to 5kW, can be AC or DC powered, and work well with surface or submersible pump operations.
Claro’s solar irrigation system provides a 50% savings compared to diesel pumps, breaking-even in less than three years. Solar-powered irrigation systems operate for 20 years, giving a long-lasting economic benefit to farmers. Solar irrigation pumps allow for on-demand pumping, improve smallholder farmer climate resiliency and food security, and are more environmentally friendly than diesel-fueled pumps. By replacing 750 liters of diesel with solar power, every solar irrigation pump installed annually prevents 2 tons of CO2 emissions.
In addition, the developed design is women-friendly because it uses lightweight solar panels, allowing for the system to easily be carried around as a backpack. Women farmers don’t have to rely on manual labor needed to lift heavy diesel pumps; instead, they can carry the irrigation systems themselves. Implemented in a pay-as-you-go business model, Claro facilitates mass adoption among women farmers.
Under a policy program designed to promote the deployment of solar irrigation systems, Claro receives and executes government contracts to install solar irrigation systems all over India.
Business Model Innovations Ensuring Resilience (Efficiency for Access)
Solar Pumps - Powering the Way Ahead (Off Grid Energy Independence)
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