Gopalganj, Bihar | Solar Pumps Tool Made with Humane Club

Gopalganj, Bihar

The average monthly per capita expenditure of rural agricultural households is relatively low for the district, suggesting poor purchasing capacity of the farmers here. It has a relatively low penetration of banks in rural and semi-rural areas, impeding access to institutional credit for farmers. There is a comparatively high level of farm mechanization in the district, implying a positive outlook towards progressive technologies amongst the farmers. The district has a relatively high proportion of small and marginal farmers. The district appears in the group of districts, which are (very) highly vulnerable towards climate change, as per an index constructed by CRIDA.

Deployment Approaches

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

Individually owned off-grid solar pumps

Not Suitable

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

Parameter Value Percentile
Number of cultivators reporting use of diesel pumps 456,038 99
Water Availability Index 0.57 43
Crop revenue per holding (INR) 22,501 13
Medium and long term institutional credit disbursed in a year (in INR Crore) 52.9 59

Solarisation of feeders

Limited Suitability

The district has a comparatively high extent of feeder segregation, and its DISCOM incurs a high cost for supplying power. But, a relatively low penetration of electric pumps means that solarisation of the feeders would not help in increasing the deployment of solar for irrigation.

Parameter Value Percentile
Actual cost of power supply (INR/kWh) 6.03 51
Extent of feeder segregation
Proportion of cultivators reporting use of electric pumps 0% 0

Solar based water as a service

Not Suitable

The concentration of small and marginal farmers is rather high in the district, but groundwater availability is below the safe limit. In addition, a relatively low proportion of unirrigated area makes it very difficult to promote solar-based irrigation through the water-as-a-service model here, unless it undercuts the price of water from existing sources, and improves water utilisation through promotion of micro-irrigation.

Parameter Value Percentile
Water Availability Index 0.57 43
Proportion of small and marginal cultivators 99% 96
Unirrigated net sown area as a share of total net sown area 11% 14

Promote 1 HP and sub-HP pumps

Not Suitable

The district has a rather high concentration of marginal farmers. But, a relatively low proportion of horticulture crops under gross cropped area, a comparatively low disbursement of institutional credit to marginal farmers, and groundwater availability below the safe limit make it extremely difficult to promote 1 HP and sub-HP pumps here. Such pumps can be promoted only if clubbed with micro-irrigation along with support to farmers for pump adoption and undertaking horticulture.

Parameter Value Percentile
Area under horticulture crops as a share of gross cropped area 5% 46
Water Availability Index 0.57 43
Proportion of marginal cultivators 95% 97
Medium and long term institutional credit disbursed in a year (in INR Crore) 52.9 59

Solarisation of individual grid-connected pumps

Limited suitability

The district has a comparatively high extent of feeder segregation and power supply to its agriculture consumerss is heavily subsidised. But, a relatively low penetration of electric pumps and groundwater availability below the safe limits means that solarisation of individual grid-connected pumps would not help in increasing the deployment of solar for irrigation.

Parameter Value Percentile
Water Availability Index 0.57 43
Actual cost of power supply (INR/kWh) 6.03 51
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 – Crop Diversification

In the district, horticulture crops occupy a relatively low proportion of gross cropped area, indicating an opportunity for growing more high value non-staple crops. Solar-powered irrigation could be an alternative source of reliable irrigation, making it easier to achieve crop diversification and enhance farmers’ incomes.

Parameter Value Percentile
Area under horticulture crops as a share of gross cropped area 5% 46

National Mission on Oilseeds and Oil Palm (NMOOP)

The relatively low share of oilseeds and oil palm crops under gross sown area in the district makes it a suitable candidate for promoting NMOOP. Solar pumps could meet irrigation needs for these crops and help farmers diversify their yields beyond cereals.

Parameter Value Percentile
Area under oilseeds as a share of total cropped area 26

Climate Resilient Farming for Small Farms

Given the high concentration of small and marginal farmers—the most vulnerable group to climate change—and a high score on climate change vulnerability index provided by CRIDA*, the district is suitable for promoting climate resilient farming for small-sized farms. Solar pumps would assist in the same through low-carbon agriculture.

Parameter Value Percentile
Proportion of small and marginal cultivators 99% 96
Score on Climate Change Vulnerability Index 0.53 77

Gopalganj, Bihar
Summary
Number of operational holdings
572,540
Average size of operational holding (Ha)
0.26
No. of cultivators using diesel pumps
456,038
No. of cultivators using electric pumps
57
Parameters (value, percentile)
Unirrigated net sown area ('000 ha)
15
20
Area under horticulture crops as a share of gross cropped area
5%
46
Water Availability Index
0.57
43
Monthly per capita expenditure of rural agricultural households (INR)
917
19
Crop revenue per holding (INR)
22,501
13
No. of rural and semi-urban bank branches per 10,000 farmers
2.99
4
Medium and long-term institutional credit disbursed in a year (in INR Crore)
52.9
59
No. of calls made at Kisan Call Centre (between 1.1.2011 - 31.12.2015)
2,120
66
Level of farm mechanisation (tractors, harvesters, threshers per ha)
3.93
98

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Bihar