Alappuzha, Kerala | Solar Pumps Tool Made with Humane Club

Alappuzha, Kerala

In the district, horticulture crops occupy a relatively high proportion of gross cropped area, raising the economic viability of solar pumps here. Overall, water availability for irrigation in the district (based on ground water development and long-term trends of water level decline) is within the safe limit, enhancing long-term sustainability of solar pumps. The average monthly per capita expenditure of rural agricultural households is relatively high for the district, suggesting higher purchasing capacity of the farmers here. The district has a relatively high proportion of small and marginal farmers. The district appears in the group of districts, which show (very) low vulnerability towards climate change, as per an index constructed by CRIDA.

Deployment Approaches

Approaches Feasibility
Individually owned off-grid solar pumps Limited Suitability
Solarisation of feeders Not Suitable
Solar based water as a service Limited Suitability
Promote 1 HP and sub-HP pumps Limited Suitability
Solarisation of individual grid-connected pumps Not suitable

Individually owned off-grid solar pumps

Limited Suitability

The district has high crop revenue per holding, and ground water available within the safe limit. But, a relatively low disbursement of institutional credit and comparatively low concentration of diesel pump users make it difficult to promote the private ownership of solar pumps here.

Parameter Value Percentile
Number of cultivators reporting use of diesel pumps 2,587 26
Water Availability Index 1 100
Crop revenue per holding (INR) 102,038 58
Medium and long term institutional credit disbursed in a year (in INR Crore) 12.8 39

Solarisation of feeders

Not Suitable

The district has a relatively high penetration of electric pumps. But, a rather low cost of power supply for the respective DISCOM and a comparatively low extent of feeder segregation make it very difficult to solarise the feeders here.

Parameter Value Percentile
Actual cost of power supply (INR/kWh) 5.43 26
Extent of feeder segregation
Proportion of cultivators reporting use of electric pumps 32% 79

Solar based water as a service

Limited Suitability

Groundwater availability in the district is within safe limit and the concentration of small and marginal farmers is comparatively high, but the proportion of unirrigated area is relatively low. A solar-based water service will have to compete with existing sources of irrigation.

Parameter Value Percentile
Water Availability Index 1 100
Proportion of small and marginal cultivators 100% 99
Unirrigated net sown area as a share of total net sown area 63% 52

Promote 1 HP and sub-HP pumps

Limited Suitability

The district has a relatively high proportion of horticulture crops under gross cropped area, high concentration of marginal farmers and groundwater availability within the safe limit, but disbursement of institutional credit to marginal farmers is comparatively low. Greater support, either through subsidies or credit, would be required to enable marginal farmers to adopt solar pumps.

Parameter Value Percentile
Area under horticulture crops as a share of gross cropped area 49% 94
Water Availability Index 1 100
Proportion of marginal cultivators 98% 99
Medium and long term institutional credit disbursed in a year (in INR Crore) 12.8 39

Solarisation of individual grid-connected pumps

Not suitable

The district has a relatively high penetration of electric pumps and ground water available within the safe limits. But, a relatively low power subsidy for agriculture consumers and a comparatively low extent of feeder segregation make it very difficult to solarise individual grid-connected pumps here.

Parameter Value Percentile
Water Availability Index 1 100
Actual cost of power supply (INR/kWh) 5.43 26
Extent of feeder segregation

Leveraging Solar Pumps to Promote Policy Objectives

If you are deploying solar pumps in this district then you can further these policy objectives.

Doubling Farmers’ Income – Capital Investment

Given the high concentration of small and marginal farmers, and their relatively better access to institutional credit, the district is suitable for doubling farmers’ income through capital investment. Solar pumps could be one of the farm technologies to invest in for farmers, especially 1 HP or sub-HP pumps for marginal farmers.

Parameter Value Percentile
Proportion of small and marginal cultivators 100% 99
Medium and long-term institutional credit disbursed in a year to small and marginal cultivators (in INR Crore) 12.8 39

Per Drop More Crop

In the district, crops suitable for drip and sprinkler irrigation occupy a relatively high proportion of gross cropped area, making it easy to adopt such high precision irrigation methods. Solar pumps, along with other efficient and precise water application devices, could be deployed under Per Drop More Crop to promote efficient irrigation.

Parameter Value Percentile
Area under crops suitable for drip and sprinkler irrigation as a share of total cropped area 53% 89

Alappuzha, Kerala
Summary
Number of operational holdings
474,362
Average size of operational holding (Ha)
0.14
No. of cultivators using diesel pumps
2,587
No. of cultivators using electric pumps
152,324
Parameters (value, percentile)
Unirrigated net sown area ('000 ha)
32
35
Area under horticulture crops as a share of gross cropped area
49%
94
Water Availability Index
1
100
Monthly per capita expenditure of rural agricultural households (INR)
2,690
96
Crop revenue per holding (INR)
102,038
58
No. of rural and semi-urban bank branches per 10,000 farmers
7.17
48
Medium and long-term institutional credit disbursed in a year (in INR Crore)
12.8
39
No. of calls made at Kisan Call Centre (between 1.1.2011 - 31.12.2015)
458
26
Level of farm mechanisation (tractors, harvesters, threshers per ha)
0.25
51

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Kerala