SN14 Solar-Powered Irrigation for Climate-Smart Agriculture in the Senegal River Valley

At a Glance

Strategic Outcomes SO1 Reduced GHG emission, SO2 Creation of green jobs, SO3 Increased access to sustainable services
Start Date Q1  January 2021
End Date q1 December 2023
Funding Source Earmarked
Actual Budget (USD) 0
Budget Percentage %
Actual Expenditure (USD)
Status Active
GGGI Share (USD)
Poverty and Gender Policy Markers gender
Name of Client (Lead/Prime implementer if GGGI is part of a consortium) Ministry of Agriculture & rural Equipment
Participating Organization (Funding/donor) Qatar Fund for Development - QFFD
Name of consortium members, if any
Thematic Area
  • Forest (Sustainable) Landscapes
  • Sustainable Energy
GGGI Project Code : SN14
Project Manager and Staff +

Country Representative Senegal

Mamadou KONATE

Senior Advisor

Modou FALL

Associate, Waste from Electrical and Electronic Equipment Management (WEEE)

Falilou CISSE

Communications Coordinator

Christella J. INNACK

Monitoring and Evaluation Associate

Project Context, Objectives & description

In Senegal, agriculture is both a key contributor to national GHG emissions and is vulnerable to climate change. The sector remains predominantly rainfed, with only 7% of cultivated land being irrigated, exposing agriculture to the effects of variable rainfall. The expected reduction in the area of agricultural land will induce an estimated 30% drop in cereal production by 2025. Senegal’s INDCs  identifies the agriculture sector as the largest contributor to the country’s GHG emissions (49%), with rice cultivation representing approximately 2% of the sector’s emissions, and identifies  the System of Rice Intensification (SRI); sustainable land management; use of good farm management practices; assisted natural regeneration; application of organic manure; agroforestry; silvopastoral systems; and the installation of biodigesters as ways to increase the sector’s resilience to climate change.

The country’s irrigation subsector is divided into two farming systems: (i) irrigated cereals dominated by paddy rice, intercropped with maize and sorghum; and (ii) smallholder irrigated horticulture with a large range of vegetables, dominated by onion and tomato. The area of land in Senegal with irrigable potential is concentrated around the Senegal River Valley (SRV) in the north, the Niayes area in the west and the Groundnut Basin in the center.

Solar irrigation has been identified as a priority action by the government as opportunities to develop irrigated crop production are significant and production costs are heavily burdened by the cost of energy for irrigation. While, Senegal’s electricity prices are among the highest in West Africa (almost twice as high as in the Ivory Coast), the country has significant solar energy resources, with solar irradiation above 2,000 kWh/m2/year for Global Horizontal Irradiation across most of the country, which gives excellent prospects for photovoltaic projects.

The project implementation area is the Senegal River Valley. The SRV is part of the Senegal River basin, where the Senegal River is formed. The Senegal River basin (SRB) occupies a total area of 289,000 km2 and includes three main regions—the upper basin, valley, and delta—with each region clearly characterized by distinct environmental conditions. The significant inter-annual variability in rainfall and water flow of the Senegal River affect irrigated agriculture in the area.

The project will pilot the solarization of 16 pumping stations and the introduction of CSA practices for irrigated rice farming, document their financial, employment and climate benefits and enable scaling with the support of the project’s partners financial institutions and the involvement of agricultural extension services providers. Dissemination to policy makers and relevant stakeholders will induce broader support for wider adoption of CSA practices and technologies.

Types of services provided & expected results

The resilience of irrigated rice farming in the Senegal River Valley to climate shocks will increase, with yields improving in pilot sites by up to 50% on average and income of 5,833 rice farmers by 10%, rice farming GHG emissions will decrease by at least 27,080 tCO2e over period of 20 years, 20,166 direct, indirect and induced jobs will be created including 460 short term jobs, and Senegal’s food security will improve.

Outcome 1: GHG emissions reduction :  At least 27,080 tCO2e avoided over period of 20 years.

Outcome 1: Additional finance mobilized for financing the scaling up of solar powered irrigation :Concept note produced and submitted to financiers for a first tranche of USD 1,500,000 of an up to 40M USD project

Outcome 2: Improvement in income for smallholder farmers in the targeted area : At least 5,833 rice farmers (including 3,733 youth and 2,974 women) with improved income from rice production

Outcome 2: Number of formal and informal jobs created for women and young people :

TOTAL: 20,166

Direct: 6,345

Indirect: 443

Direct post project completion: 687

Induced: 12,691

(6,472 women, 8,121 youth)