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Determinants of Household Fuel Choice in Major Cities in Ethiopia

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  • Mekonnen, Alemu
  • Köhlin, Gunnar

Abstract

This paper looks at the fuel choice of urban households in major Ethiopian cities, using panel data collected in 2000 and 2004. It examines use of multiple fuels by households in some detail, a topic not much explored in the household fuel-choice literature in general, and in sub-Saharan Africa in particular. The results suggest that as households’ total expenditures rise, they increase the number of fuels used, even in urban areas, and they also spend more on the fuels they consume (including charcoal but not wood). The results also show that even fuel types such as wood are not inferior goods. The results support more recent arguments in the literature (using Latin American and Asian data) that multiple fuel use (fuel stacking) better describes fuel-choice behavior of households in developing countries, as opposed to the idea that households switch (completely) to other (more expensive but cleaner) fuels as their incomes rise. This study shows the relevance of fuel stacking (multiple fuel use) in urban areas in sub-Saharan Africa. While income is an important variable, the results of this study suggest the need to consider other variables such as cooking and consumption habits, dependability of supply, cost, and household preferences and tastes to explain household fuel choice, as well as to recommend policies that address issues associated with household energy use.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Resources For the Future in its series Discussion Papers with number dp-08-18-efd.

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Date of creation: 15 Aug 2008
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Handle: RePEc:rff:dpaper:dp-08-18-efd

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Keywords: Household fuel; urban; Ethiopia;

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  1. Davis, Mark, 1998. "Rural household energy consumption : The effects of access to electricity--evidence from South Africa," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 207-217, February.
  2. Heltberg, Rasmus, 2005. "Factors determining household fuel choice in Guatemala," Environment and Development Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 10(03), pages 337-361, June.
  3. Kebede, Bereket & Bekele, Almaz & Kedir, Elias, 2002. "Can the urban poor afford modern energy? The case of Ethiopia," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 30(11-12), pages 1029-1045, September.
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Cited by:
  1. Fidelis O. Ogwumike & Uchechukwu M. Ozughalu & Gabriel A. Abiona, 2014. "Household Energy Use and Determinants: Evidence from Nigeria," International Journal of Energy Economics and Policy, Econjournals, vol. 4(2), pages 248-262.
  2. Manning, Dale T. & Taylor, J. Edward, 2014. "Migration and fuel use in rural Mexico," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 102(C), pages 126-136.
  3. Mensah, Justice T. & Adu, George, 2012. "An Empirical Analysis Of Household Energy Choice In Ghana," Working Paper Series 2013:6, Department Economics, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences.
  4. Gebreegziabher, Zenebe & Mekonnen, Alemu & Kassie, Menale & Köhlin, Gunnar, 2010. "Urban Energy Transition and Technology Adoption: The Case of Tigrai, Northern Ethiopia," Discussion Papers dp-10-22-efd, Resources For the Future.
  5. Brew-Hammond, Abeeku, 2010. "Energy access in Africa: Challenges ahead," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(5), pages 2291-2301, May.

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