South Sudan

Global Solar and Water Initiative Visit Report: Refugee and IDP Camps in Maban, Yida and Bentiu, South Sudan (3 - 20 July 2017)


Executive Summary and Recommendations

The Global Solar and Water Initiative team undertook a visit to South Sudan in order to assess selected existing solar pumping schemes, evaluate the feasibility to solarize water supply points in selected camps and raise awareness and solar technical expertise among WASH stakeholders in the country. 28 water supply schemes were visited in 7 locations: 26 in camps plus 2 solarised community systems in Pariang County. Out of the 28 visited only 5 were running exclusively with generators.

Solar pumping has been extensively used in camps in South Sudan for the last years

Security incidents in Bentiu POC camp hindered visits to 4 functional water supply points, 2 of which were being solarized.

The visit entailed collection of relevant data needed for full techno-economic analysis of the systems, in order to determine feasibility for solar pumping as well as gauge the design and performance of solarised schemes. Absence of basic data such as safe yields, water outputs (disaggregated in case of hybrid systems) or water levels made not possible to analyse all the visited water points, especially in Maban. Its absence put into question the basis for some of the existing solar designs.

Climatological and hydrogeological conditions in the locations visited were favourable, making the use of solar pumping a technically feasible solution for each and every borehole and surface scheme assessed

Wide support and prioritization given by some donors to solar solutions in South Sudan, together with a high solar irradiation through the year make the context good to use solar pumping in the country.

Following the visit, a technical and economic analysis of the water points was carried out. The technical analysis took into consideration the water demand based on the population data provided by implementing agencies as well as either the safe yield of the boreholes -when available- or the current pumping rate, in order to ensure over-abstraction would not occur.

From the economic point of view, a Present Worth analysis over the longer lifespan of equipment (solar panel, 25 years) was carried out, using an average Real Interest Rate of 12% (World Bank data, details of methodology in annex A). This rate implies an amelioration of economic conditions over time; in case this would not become true, the case for solar would be stronger since future costs related to O&M are much lower for solar systems than for diesel ones.

Solar material prices were received from private sectors players in Juba and these were used against existing quotations given by implementing agencies to prepare a generic pricing matrix for the analysis.