THE Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) turned over Tuesday, May 4, a solar-powered irrigation system (SPIS) worth P1 million to some 30 agrarian reform beneficiary organizations (ARBOs) in Bani, Pangasinan.
Ma. Ana Francisco, provincial agrarian reform program officer of Pangasinan and concurrent assistant regional director for administration of DAR Ilocos Region, said the system is under the Climate Resilient Farm Productivity Support Project (CRFPSP) of the department.
Francisco said SPIS is to boost the yield of farmer-beneficiaries.
“With the help of the SPIS, the production cost of our farmers will be reduced because they will no longer buy gasoline for their generator sets,” she said in an interview.
She said an SPIS irrigates at least three to five hectares of farmland.
Noli Bergonia, president of the Rang-Ay Upland Integrated Farmers Association Inc. (RUFAI), said the irrigation system will be a “big boost” to their high-value crops.
“The farmlands are situated in upland barangays and we needed to use water pumps to draw water from the well to irrigate our lands but we use either gasoline or diesel. However, with the solar-powered irrigation system, we would be able to save as it does not use gas or diesel,” he said in a separate interview.
Bergonia said the irrigation system was designed to provide water to three to 10 hectares of farmland.
“If there is sufficient heat from the sun, it generates more water,” he said.
DAR Secretary Brother John Castriciones led the turnover ceremony together with other local officials in the town. (PNA)