Mong Villagers in Dak Lak Access Solar Electricity and Clean Water

More than 190 households from the Mong ethnic group in Ea Rot Village, in the Krong Bong District of Central Highlands Province of Dak Lak have gained access to electricity and clean water thanks to a solar energy system supported by the Green Innovation and Development Centre (Green ID). The electricity and clean water supply system using solar energy was transferred to the local community on Friday. The system has an installation capacity of 6.24 kWp using solar panels to generate electricity for domestic use and electricity for a Reverse Osmosis water filtration system. The design enables the system to generate 20kWh per day, meet the lighting demand of about 20 households and supplying 700 to 1,000 liters of clean water per day for the villagers. It needs about four sunlight hours, from 10am to 2pm, to generate electricity for the water filtration system. The remaining generated electricity will be saved in battery accumulators used for lighting at night. The electricity generating capacity will increase when the electricity demand is high. The electricity and clean water supply system using solar energy will function for the next 20 years. It received investment worth VND500 million ($21,700) by the McKnight Fund, within the framework of a project that supports the engagement of stakeholders and sustainable energy solutions in Vietnam’s energy development plan. The project has been conducted by Green ID and Dak Lak Province’s Department of Industry and Trade between January 2016 and December 2017. To ensure the fiscal sustainability of the project, locals will pay VND2,000 ($0.09) for 1kWh and about VND7,000-8,000 ($0.3) for a 20-litre fresh water bottle. The money will be used for operation and maintenance. Nguyen Van tam, Chairman of Cu Pui Commune’s People’s Committee said that Ea Rot Village did not have access to electricity, so the villagers are happy with this system. “The villagers will be responsible for preserving the system. The authorities must send a technician to fix any problem,” he said. According to Green ID, the system has the advantage of low-cost installation fees and simple maintenance. When the national grid comes to the village, this system can be adjusted to fit with the national grid. “The system not only provides humanitarian benefits, but also brings about locality-specific results by establishing energy plans in line with the community’s demands,” Nguy Thi Khanh, Green ID Executive Director said, expressing her wish to bring similar systems to other localities, thanks to support of State agencies and sponsors. (Vietnam News Nov 13)