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Farmers turn to solar power in Syria's former breadbasket

Solar panels are helping Syrian farmers irrigate their crops despite electricity shortages and drought
— Al-Haddadiya (Syria) (AFP)

At his farm in Syria's northeast, Abdullah al-Mohammed adjusts a large solar panel, one of hundreds that have cropped up over the years as farmers seek to stave off electricity shortages in the war-ravaged region.

Solar energy has offered a lifeline for the farmers amid drought and power shortages, but some warn the boom also has environmental costs in the once-fertile region.

"We are trying to revive our land," despite dwindling groundwater reserves, said Mohammed, 38, as he oriented the panel towards the sun near his cotton fields.

In his village of Al-Haddadiya in Hasakeh province, farmers are using solar energy to power irrigation systems for all kinds of crops, from vegetables to wheat, barley and cotton.

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