The Pakistan Agriculture Research Council (Parc) and International Water Management Institute (IWMI) agreed to conduct joint research and implement the Solar Irrigation for Agricultural Resilience in South Asia (SOLAR-SA) project.
According to a press release issued on Friday, both entities signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in this regard.
Speaking on the occasion, Parc Chairman Dr Muhammad Azeem Khan was of the view that the best way to meet the nutritional needs of the depleting agricultural water and the growing population was to discover high yielding crops per acre.
"At the same time, modern methods of irrigation should be adopted instead of traditional irrigation methods," he said. "With SOLAR-SA project, Parc and IWMI will be able to tap the potential of solar irrigation pumps by replacing the existing diesel and grid connected pumps with them."
Furthermore, dissemination of the research results and technical support will be provided by organising scientific conferences, forums and seminars, he said.
IWMI Country Representative Dr Mohsin Hafeez revealed that under the agreement, both parties would promote policies and strategies for sustainable and equitable renewable energy transition in irrigation sector in ways that will mitigate existing groundwater issues in Pakistan.
"Solar irrigation pumps are sustainable, climate resilient and beneficial for the end users and they also act as the best alternative in the areas where there is no electricity," he said.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 22nd, 2020.