The Romanian Ministry of Agriculture plans to implement a pilot program to install photovoltaic panels on irrigation canals. The authorities responsible for the agricultural sector understand the need to set up a functional irrigation system that uses energy from renewable sources, given that considerable subsidies are paid annually to compensate for losses incurred by farmers due to the summer drought.
Specialists from the Ministry of Agriculture also highlight a number of benefits due to the installation of photovoltaic panels on irrigation canals, as follows: reduction of water loss by evaporation, use of a non-productive surface cheap energy and, implicitly, the creation of new jobs. In addition, the photovoltaic panels placed on the water surface benefit from a proper cooling, thus increasing their efficiency and productivity.
It is estimated a total area of irrigation canals to be up to 96 million square meters, enough to produce a great amount of clean and cheap energy. These topics were also included in the National Recovery and Resilience Plan, submitted to the European Union, but without obtaining an approval for the allocation of funds in this direction. The Minister gave assurances that he will ensure from the national funds the budget for this pilot program, being confident in its success.