Search

Search form

Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Solar power for communes

Solar power for communes

Solar power for communes

The offices of commune officials along the Tonle Sap basin will soon be solar-powered as part of a poverty-reduction project backed by the Asian Development Bank.

Some 123 off-the-grid commune council offices in Banteay Meanchey, Siem Reap, Kampong Thom and Kampong Cham provinces will be fitted with solar panels to power computers and support the online flow of information to Cambodia’s rural areas, according to Chanthou Hem, senior project officer at the ADB.

“This immediately opens up enormous opportunities for information gathering at the commune level, primarily in the context of TSSD [Tonle Sap Poverty Reduction and Smallholder Development Project],” he said in an emailed statement.

Extra power will foster access to information on improved agricultural technologies and marketing opportunities, Hem added.

The solar installation forms part of the $51.1 million TSSD, which aims to improve conditions for 630,000 households along the Tonle Sap by 2020 through improved farming techniques and better quality seeds.

At an average cost of $2,400 per commune, the panels are to be installed by mid-2014, with internet access and IT training to be completed by the end of the year.

“The installation of the solar panels will help to raise awareness of the opportunity to invest in solar power and their application may spread within the commune,” Hem said.

The project covers an additional 73 communes that are already hooked up to the grid. But for those that are not, solar is the right way to go, Ny Kimsan, the project manager at the National Committee for Subnational Democratic Development Secretariat, said.

“I think that solar power is a good alternative for cheap electricity and for the environment,” Kimsan said.

RECOMMENDED STORIES

  • Breaking: PM says prominent human rights NGO ‘must close’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has instructed the Interior Ministry to investigate the Cambodian Center for Human Rights (CCHR) and potentially close it “because they follow foreigners”, appearing to link the rights group to the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party's purported “revolution”. The CNRP - the

  • Rainsy and Sokha ‘would already be dead’: PM

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Sunday appeared to suggest he would have assassinated opposition leaders Sam Rainsy and Kem Sokha had he known they were promising to “organise a new government” in the aftermath of the disputed 2013 national elections. In a clip from his speech

  • Massive ceremony at Angkor Wat will show ‘Cambodia not in anarchy’: PM

    Government officials, thousands of monks and Prime Minister Hun Sen himself will hold a massive prayer ceremony at Angkor Wat in early December to highlight the Kingdom’s continuing “peace, independence and political stability”, a spectacle observers said was designed to disguise the deterioration of

  • PM tells workers CNRP is to blame for any sanctions

    In a speech to workers yesterday, Prime Minister Hun Sen pinned the blame for any damage inflicted on Cambodia’s garment industry by potential economic sanctions squarely on the opposition party. “You must remember clearly that if the purchase orders are reduced, it is all