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Identifying Photovoltaic Water Pumping (PVWP) Systems Opportunities in Albanian’s Agriculture Context

A lot of economic analyses have been conducted in the last ten years to establish the most cost-effective solution for irrigation and evaluation of the project profitability. The benefits generated by the PVWP providing water by a submersible pump located inside a deep well have been highlighted for Divjaka region. The solar potential in the site is quite enough to be used to pump water from the deep well into the tank positioned at an effective altitude which can provide the water quantity and pressure by gravity. The study shows that installing a PVWP system represents the best technical and economic solution to drive a water pump that provides water for sprinkler irrigation. The economic benefits have been also addressed, evaluating the energy production and distribution throughout the year and the specific cost per m3 of water supplied (€/m3). Renewables are the key to enhance food and water security, drive agri-food productivity, leading to socioeconomic benefits in recovering from post-Covid-19. By combining our knowledge, data collected, surveys together can contribute to economic growth of our community-ensuring access to clean and affordable energy and raising the standard of living of rural and most vulnerable communities. In the area there are used two types of water pumping for irrigation purposes: Diesel driven water pumps and electricity powered water pumps. Both systems are very costly due to the high fuel cost and on the other hand self-investment to bring electricity from the national distribution lines are needed. The study shows very good results compared to the existing water pump systems (totally based on fossil or electricity from the grid) applied for irrigation purposes in Albania. Further investment in RES is essential for agri-food systems transformation and development, climate resilience and net-zero strategies by 2030 in Albanian context, as the majority of the rural population lies their economy on agriculture. The use of this kind of system could have an important contribution in the diversification of energy sources, mitigation of GHG, social and economic development of our country.