Antecedents and Consequences of Well Water Pumping With Solar Cells Systems Used in Agriculture

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Chutchanun Tanomvorsin

Abstract

The objectives of this research were to: 1) study current state of ecological aspect, physical aspect, and human activities, related to the use of a solar powered pumping system in agriculture; 2) examine consequences of using a solar powered pumping system in agriculture; and 3) compare value of money in investing in a solar powered pumping system and in a dynamo water pump. This research used an experimental research approach. The experiment was conducted in the areas of rice and sugarcane cultivation in three districts of Suphanburi Province including Muang District, Don Chedi District, and Sam Chuk District. These areas were located in a radius of 500 meters from a place where a solar powered water pumping system was installed. Data were collected by conducting in-depth interviews with five experts who were executives of government organizations in charge of water management and 40 local residents who were agriculturists and used ground water for their farms from the solar powered pumping system. The data were analyzed with basic statistics including percentage, mean, and standard deviation. Data from in-depth interviews were analyzed with content analysis. Additionally, the t-test was also used to test and compare the outcomes before and after using a solar powered water pumping system for agriculture. The research findings indicated that: 1) in terms of the ecological aspect, there were animals or insects, both pests and beneficial animals/insects, in the areas. As for the physical condition of the areas, the condition of soil, weather, and other general environment were suitable for agriculture; for the human activities, the agriculturists believed that a solar powered water pumping system did not cause pollution to environment and human health; they also thought that using such a system was an effective way of utilizing natural resources; and 2) after utilizing the solar powered water pumping system in agriculture, agriculturists could have water sufficient for their crops to grow well; and ecological and physical conditions as well as human activities were in better conditions than before using the system, with a .01 level of statistical significance; and 3) investing in a solar powered water pumping system provided more value for money than investing in a dynamo water pump. The research provides knowledge on how to deal with an impact of a drought for agriculturists by suggesting that they should use a solar powered water pumping system because it helps save energy and can be used long-term. Although agriculturists are not able to provide the maintenance for such system by themselves as they need proper maintenance by a skillful mechanic, such a system appears to provide more value for money in the long-term.

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References

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