India - Creation of passive solar bathrooms and access to hot water (kitchens & bathrooms) by solar water heaters for boarding schools in Ladakh
- Selected project
- In progress
Presentation of the association and the context
An extension of Yann Arthus-Bertrand’s artistic work and commitment to the environment, the GoodPlanet Foundation, created in 2015 and recognised as being of public utility, aims to place ecology and humanity at the heart of consciousness and create the desire to take concrete action for the earth and its inhabitants.
The context of the project
The GoodPlanet Foundation has been active in Ladakh since 2013 with a program of bioclimatic school buildings (classrooms and boarding school dormitories). From a single boarding school at the beginning, the Foundation’s intervention was extended in 2017 to 8 boarding schools in the Leh region, the Zanskar valley and the ChangTang plateau, thus enabling more than 1,200 children to benefit from a healthier diet, based on fresh vegetables produced locally in these schools and thanks to greenhouses specifically adapted to the extreme cold. The school nutrition programme has also improved food storage and hygiene practices in catering but this has raised the problem of equipment needed for heating water for cooking and personal hygiene. Today, the proposed project aims to complete the infrastructure in the boarding schools. Synergie Solaire is renewing its support, already provided in 2014, through finance and skills sponsorship, for the construction of a bioclimatic school.
Presentation of the project
The energy problem
Ladakh is a cold and arid high-altitude Himalayan region (less than 200 mm of rainfall per year). The Zanskar valley (3700m) and the Changtang plateau (4400m) are exposed to a particularly difficult climate, with winter temperatures frequently below -20°c and accompanied by heavy snowfalls and violent winds. It is very difficult to ensure the supply of electricity (frequent power cuts) and hot water for hygiene. The hygiene conditions of the population are very poor and it is essential to have an additional source of energy to ensure the service. Many inhabitants use generators (which are noisy and polluting) and gas to heat water.
The adopted solutions
In Ladakh, the sunshine conditions are exceptional with clear skies on more than 300 days a year, this makes the use of solar energy very interesting, whether it be to heat water or to design passive solar buildings. Eleven boarding schools are involved in this project, and in view of the situation of each one, it is envisaged to implement one or more of the following actions:
– The renovation and/or construction of passive solar bathrooms
– Installation of water heaters for the kitchen and bathrooms
– Water supply for pumps and/or PV panels
– Electricity supply for batteries and/or PV panels
Installations will be maintained by Ladakh Heating Solution, a company with 12 years of experience in the solar sector in Leh. A two-year maintenance contract to be put in place after commissioning and staff members of the boarding school will be trained by the company for routine maintenance and small repairs.