- Davis & Shirtliff, Millenium Water Alliance(MWA) partner to equip agro-pastoralists with low-cost solar-powered irrigation systems
The partnership seeks to enhance food security and expand the availability of safe and sufficient water supply to households through solar water pumping in Arid and Semi-Arid regions of Kenya. MWA is global alliance of leading humanitarian, research and business organizations.
Farmers in the five counties of Wajir, Turkana, Garissa, Marsabit and Isiolo are targeted in a plan that will see agro-pastoralists acquire solar-powered irrigation equipment in small affordable instalments under a pre-paid financing model, pay-as-you-go (PayGo).
Davis & Shirtliff Group Chief Executive Officer, George Mbugua said the MoU aims at removing initial financial barriers to clean energy access by allowing agricultural and pastoral households use solar electricity to water their crops and feed livestock.
“Agro-pastoralist communities are some of the most vulnerable groups affected by climate variabilities.Through this initiative, we will be seeking to cushion them from the shocks of climate change and increase their capacity to produce food and secure their livelihoods,” Mbugua said.
“Ultimately, we want to increase the number of households with access to safe and adequate water supply through supporting water point rehabilitation and the regular operation and maintenance of water points to bolster food security in target counties,” he added.
Davis & Shirtliff, the leading supplier of water and energy related equipment in the East Africa region will provide the solar powered irrigation systems to farmers while MWA will partially finance the purchase of the solar systems for select farmers through funding from the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC).
The company will also custom-design a low-cost PayGo system to cater for low-income communities and farmers in the arid and semi-arid regions, support training of borehole response and repair teams and technical staff of water utilities.
“MWA will also co-finance the training of water points operators, the Borehole Response and Repair Teams and Water utilities as well Collaborate with Davis and Shirtliff on water point development through corporate social responsibility,” said Millennium Water Alliance Country Representative, Styvers Kathuni.