The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) has installed solar panels in three Turkmen villages to reduce greenhouse gas emissions associated with pumping water by diesel generators. Thus, a pilot project on the use of renewable energy sources was launched in the central part of the Karakum Desert.
Solar power systems with a capacity of 10 kW were installed in the villages of Beri, El and Byashkak to demonstrate the practical use of “clean energy” sources.
The inhabitants of these villages are mainly engaged in breeding livestock and collect rainwater to water the animals. Accumulated in special containers, it is taken to the places of cattle grazing, but long-term storage of water leads to a deterioration of its hygienic qualities.
Additional sources of electricity are required for the accumulated water purification. But because of difficulties with electricity supply, local citizens use diesel generators, which work for several hours a day and are serious sources of pollutant emission into the atmosphere.
The UNDP project “Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy for Sustainable Water Management in Turkmenistan”, implemented jointly with the State Water Committee of the country, and financed by Global Environment Facility (GEF), will solve the regional problem of water resources management and electricity consumption.
According to Project Manager Geldy Muradov, Turkmenistan’s weather conditions are highly favorable for efficient use of renewable energy sources, including solar energy. The use of small-sized solar installations in remote localities is economically beneficial, since the construction of power lines involves considerable expenditure.
The introduction of new technologies will ensure sufficient and environmentally sustainable water supply. The electricity, generated by solar panels will completely replace the electricity, formerly provided by diesel generators.
The demonstration project includes the practical training of local residents in the operation and maintenance of new equipment. It is expected that the emergence of similar solar panels throughout the country will lead to a reduction of diesel fuel utilization in electricity generation and will have a positive impact on the ecology of Turkmenistan.