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Solar powered water pumps up incomes for Nepal's quake-hit farmers


A solar water powered pump installed in October 2017 powers a pump bringing up 40,000 litres of water per day to the remote village of Shikharpur in Nepal, 7 February 2018. Thomson Reuters Foundation

Solar water pumps up incomes for Nepal's quake-hit farmers

Standing in golden mustard fields, a huge solar panel powers the pump that provides some 40,000 liters of water daily to families still recovering from Nepal’s devastating 2015 earthquake.

Helping families recover has proved harder than expected, for reasons ranging from aid funding delays to a fuel blockade.

In Shikharpur, located about 50 km (31 miles) from the capital, the 7.8-magnitude earthquake left most households without access to drinking water, said Ram Prasad Bolakhe, a community leader.

“There were many problems,” he said, listing destroyed homes, contaminated water and frequent power outages.

To improve access to clean water, a project led by British charity Renewable World set up a solar-powered pump that collects underground water and transfers it up 72 meters (236 ft) to the Himalayan village, where it is stored in tanks.