09 August 2020
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Renewable energy crucial for irrigation farming - MERA

Written by  Taonga Nyirenda
A maize irrigation filed like this could benefit from renewable energy - File Photo A maize irrigation filed like this could benefit from renewable energy - File Photo

Rumphi, August 16, 2018: Smallholder famers in Rumphi have been advised to start using renewable energy such as solar-generated power if they are to achieve food security and improve their economic status through irrigation.

Malawi Energy Regulatory Authority (MERA) Electricity and Renewable Energy specialist, Francis Chirambo was speaking Wednesday in the district during a sensitization meeting to equip communities with knowledge on energy policies and electricity by -laws.

Chirambo said solar energy, if properly utilized, has the potential of boosting irrigation farming in the district.

“Solar energy systems which are properly installed can assist farmers to produce enough food and allow them to sell the surplus as they can harvest three times in a year,” Chirambo said.

He then advised farmers to be hiring certified solar energy system installers to ensure efficiency and durability of their solar systems.

Chirambo applauded some stakeholders in the agriculture sector such a Catholic Development Commission (CADECOM) who promote the use of solar energy in pumping water for irrigation farming.

“I am grateful to partners who initiate such approaches to farming as solar energy is cheaper compared to other sources of energy,” he said.

CADECOM Diocesan Programs Manager for Mzuzu Diocese, Wanangwa Msowoya whose organization organized the sensitization meeting said it was important for farmers, especially who use renewable energy to be knowledgeable of the country’s energy policies for them to have access to reliable service providers.

“Renewable energy is environmentally friendly and is cheaper than other forms of energy,” said Msowoya.

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