Due to a drop solar panel prices, solar pumps for irrigation have increasingly become an economical, technical and environmentally viable option. However, one major drawback in the uptake of the technology is still a lack of information on solar pumps for irrigation. Farmers struggle to get sound information in order to make informed decisions on investing and maintaining SPIS.

The Solar Power Irrigation System Toolbox (SPIS TB) has been jointly developed by GIZ (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit GmbH) and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). It provides a holistic set of practical materials through which advisors can guide their clients towards a financially and environmentally sound choice.

After undertaking a SPIS TB Trainers course in November 2018, certified WISEe Trainers, together with GIZ and FAO, successfully trained over 120 experts and practitioners at national and international workshops in Kenya, Ghana, Uganda and Malawi. Trainees came from 14 countries including Nigeria, Togo, India, Kenya, Mozambique, Mali, Zambia, Cameroun, Burkina Faso, Benin and Germany, and 40% were female.

The 2-5 day trainings covered various aspects of SPIS including agronomy, water management, design, operation, maintenance, irrigation management, markets and finance. Learning was enhanced through hands-on exercises, group work, site visits and show-casing of products. Trainees exchanged ideas on how to create enabling policy environments for the sustainable use of SPIS in their respective countries.