The new solar symbiosis
GIZ Viet Nam is combining solar energy and agriculture to tap into over 70 million hectares of new opportunities. Income for farmers, shade for animals and crops, electricity for the country: two new projects aim at identifying agricultural or aquacultural use-cases profiting from solar panel shading, while maintaining or increasing yield. The use-cases will be piloted in high-potential regions, resulting in the development of scalable business models for small hold farmers. Parallelly, the projects create an enabling environment for the scaling-up phase. Finally, a close scientific monitoring by several research institutes guarantees for evidence-based results, that will be disseminated over the projects lifetime and beyond.
SHRIMPS: 08/2019 – 05/2023 (BMBF)
The SHRIMPS consortium, consisting of research institutes, private sector, non-profits and governmental actors has identified shrimp farming as one of the most promising use-cases for agricultural photovoltaics (PV) in Viet Nam.
The first pilot project of its kind will feature a 100kWp PV system to provide different grades of partial shading to shrimp hatchery ponds. The construction will protect the light-sensitive crustaceans from the intense sunshine and heat in the south of the country. Initially, a pilot phase will create more insight on the particularities of the PV system setup, especially on balancing the mix of shade and sunshine, but also project finance parameters and opportunities for self-consuming the generated electricity. Overall the consortium aims to substantially increase farmers’ income, create clean electricity, as well as to reduce freshwater consumption, wastewater, CO2emissions and pollutants.
APV: 07/2022 – 06/2025 (BMZ)
The project in development will start mid-2022 and builds up on the efforts of SHRIMPS.
Next to aquacultural use-cases, this project will explore the vast potential of crop-agriculture in Viet Nam, aiming at creating a win-win situation for several crops as cassava, asparagus or even coffee and rice. A number of pilot-projects in multiplicator-regions (i.e. Mekong Delta or Central Highlands) will explore the potential of this solar symbiosis. The most promising crops will be built into scalable business models for small hold farmers. Furthermore, an enabling environment created together with national and provincial governments will facilitate the scaling up phase in the respective regions. Overall the project aims at strengthening economic resilience for farmers through an additional income, increasing the clean electricity share in Viet Nam and strengthening the food value chain.
Thomas Krohn – Project Manager, GIZ Energy Support Programme (ESP) – Viet Nam
AgriSolar, AgriPV, Solar Sharing, Aquaculture PV, dual land-use