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Renewables in the energy transition: Evidence on solar home systems and lighting fuel choice in Kenya

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  • Lay, Jann
  • Ondraczek, Janosch
  • Stöver, Jana

Abstract

We study the determinants of households' choices of lighting fuels in Kenya including the option of using solar home systems (SHS). Our goal is to add new evidence on the factors that influence the introduction and adoption of decentralized and less carbon-intensive energy sources in developing countries, and, more generally, to the empirical debate on the energy ladder. We capitalize on a unique representative survey on energy use and sources from Kenya, one of the few relatively well-established SHS markets in the world. Our results reveal some very interesting patterns of the fuel transition in the context of lighting fuel choices. While we find clear evidence for a cross-sectional energy ladder, the income threshold for modern fuel use - including solar energy use - to move beyond traditional and transitional fuels is very high. Income and education turn out to be key determinants of SHS adoption, but we also find a very pronounced effect of SHS clustering, i.e. the prevalence of SHS systems in the proximity of a potential user increases the likelihood of adoption. In addition, we do not find a negative correlation between grid access and SHS use. --

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Hamburg Institute of International Economics (HWWI) in its series HWWI Research Papers with number 121.

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Date of creation: 2012
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Handle: RePEc:zbw:hwwirp:121

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Keywords: renewable energy; household fuel choice; lighting fuel choice; solar power use; solar home systems; Kenya; energy ladder; KIHBS;

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Cited by:
  1. Ondraczek, Janosch, 2014. "Are we there yet? Improving solar PV economics and power planning in developing countries: The case of Kenya," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 30(C), pages 604-615.
  2. Vöpel, Henning, 2013. "A Zidane clustering theorem: Why top players tend to play in one team and how the competitive balance can be restored," HWWI Research Papers 141, Hamburg Institute of International Economics (HWWI).
  3. Hohenleitner, Ingrid & Hillmann, Katja, 2012. "Impact of Benefit Sanctions on Unemployment Outflow - Evidence from German Survey Data," Annual Conference 2012 (Goettingen): New Approaches and Challenges for the Labor Market of the 21st Century 66055, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
  4. Ondraczek, Janosch, 2013. "The sun rises in the east (of Africa): A comparison of the development and status of solar energy markets in Kenya and Tanzania," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 56(C), pages 407-417.
  5. Samad, Hussain A. & Khandk, Shahidur R. & Asaduzzaman, M. & Yunus, Mohammad, 2013. "The benefits of solar home systems :an analysis from Bangladesh," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6724, The World Bank.

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