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Sustainability 2016, 8(8), 770; doi:10.3390/su8080770

Does Institutional Failure Undermine the Physical Design Performance of Solar Water Pumping Systems in Rural Nepal?

1
Institute of Engineering and Alternative Energy Promotion Center (AEPC), Lalitpur Sub Metropolitan City 14364, Nepal
2
International Resource Sciences, Akita University, Akita 010-8502, Japan
3
Graduate School for International Development and Cooperation, Hiroshima University, Hiroshima 739-8529, Japan
4
School of Global Humanities and Social Sciences, Nagasaki University, Nagasak 852-8521, Japan
5
Sojitsu Corporation, Tokyo 100-8691, Japan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: John K. Kaldellis
Received: 15 April 2016 / Revised: 8 July 2016 / Accepted: 3 August 2016 / Published: 9 August 2016
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Abstract

The mountainous hinterland in rural Nepal lacks a fundamental social infrastructure. For example, the lack of electricity causes water provision difficulties, especially in mountainous areas where villagers, especially women and children, often spend a considerable amount of time just conveying water to their homes. To overcome this challenge, a subsidy policy for the installation of a solar-photovoltaic water pumping system (SWPS) has recently been implemented nationwide in Nepal. The Nepali government’s tight financial constraints require that the installation process is both economically and technologically sound. However, the institutional design of the current subsidization policy is price-distortionary and potentially induces the installation of inefficient systems. By collecting original field data from 38 wards in all seven regions of Nepal, this paper measures the SWPS’s technical efficiencies and then identifies relevant economic policies that will enhance the performance of the SWPS. Our results show, inter alia, that a higher dependency on financial support from the government is associated with excessive investment in the SWPS. View Full-Text
Keywords: solar; water; Nepal; rural development; data envelopment analysis; subsidy policy solar; water; Nepal; rural development; data envelopment analysis; subsidy policy
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MDPI and ACS Style

Dhital, R.P.; Ito, Y.; Kaneko, S.; Komatsu, S.; Mihara, R.; Yoshida, Y. Does Institutional Failure Undermine the Physical Design Performance of Solar Water Pumping Systems in Rural Nepal? Sustainability 2016, 8, 770.

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