Protecting the Pongamia Plantation
3,500 pongamia seedlings have been planted at the Himalayan Institute Energy Farming demonstration site at the Tibetan Rabgayling Settlement.
The seedlings have been doing very well and are now about 3-4 feet tall. Once fully mature, the seeds from these trees will be used to produce biofuel, which will help to bring jobs and sustainability to the settlement.
Recently, elephants and cattle have wandered onto the plantation, damaging some of the trees in the process. The local Energy Farming team, made up of a Project Supervisor and three assistants, quickly went into action to address the problem. They installed a solar electric fence to protect the plantation. It was a perfect choice – the fence was made from affordable materials (stakes and wire) and since it runs on solar power it will provide a sustainable solution to what could have been a serious problem.
More trouble bubbled up when an underground irrigation pipeline burst. Again the local team was quick to respond – the pipe was dug up and the broken piece was replaced. The ability to address problems such as these as they arise is what will continue to make the Energy Farming project a success and the team at the Tibetan Rabgyeling Settlement has shown that they are up to the challenge!