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Appliance Ownership and Aspirations among Electric Grid and Home Solar Households in Rural Kenya

Author

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  • Kenneth Lee
  • Edward Miguel
  • Catherine Wolfram

Abstract

In Sub-Saharan Africa, there are active debates about whether increases in energy access should be driven by investments in electric grid infrastructure or small-scale “home solar” systems (e.g., solar lanterns and solar home systems). We summarize the results of a household electrical appliance survey and describe how households in rural Kenya differ in terms of appliance ownership and aspirations. Our data suggest that home solar is not a substitute for grid power. Furthermore, the environmental advantages of home solar are likely to be relatively small in countries like Kenya, where grid power is primarily derived from non-fossil fuel sources

Suggested Citation

  • Kenneth Lee & Edward Miguel & Catherine Wolfram, 2016. "Appliance Ownership and Aspirations among Electric Grid and Home Solar Households in Rural Kenya," NBER Working Papers 21949, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:21949
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Barron, Manuel & Torero, Maximo, 2017. "Household electrification and indoor air pollution," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 86(C), pages 81-92.
    2. Kenneth Lee & Edward Miguel & Catherine Wolfram, 2016. "Experimental Evidence on the Demand for and Costs of Rural Electrification," NBER Working Papers 22292, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    Cited by:

    1. Barron, Manuel & Torero, Maximo, 2017. "Household electrification and indoor air pollution," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 86(C), pages 81-92.
    2. Lambe, Fiona & Ran, Ylva & Jürisoo, Marie & Holmlid, Stefan & Muhoza, Cassilde & Johnson, Oliver & Osborne, Matthew, 2020. "Embracing complexity: A transdisciplinary conceptual framework for understanding behavior change in the context of development-focused interventions," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 126(C).
    3. Sievert, Maximiliane & Steinbuks, Jevgenijs, 2020. "Willingness to pay for electricity access in extreme poverty: Evidence from sub-Saharan Africa," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 128(C).
    4. Majah-Leah Ravago & James Roumasset, 2016. "The Public Economics of Electricity Policy with Philippine Applications," Working Papers 201613, University of Hawaii at Manoa, Department of Economics.
    5. Kurata, Masamitsu & Matsui, Noriatsu & Ikemoto, Yukio & Tsuboi, Hiromi, 2018. "Do determinants of adopting solar home systems differ between households and micro-enterprises? Evidence from rural Bangladesh," Renewable Energy, Elsevier, vol. 129(PA), pages 309-316.
    6. Richmond, Jennifer & Urpelainen, Johannes, 2019. "Electrification and appliance ownership over time: Evidence from rural India," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 133(C).
    7. Rains, Emily & Abraham, Ronald J., 2018. "Rethinking barriers to electrification: Does government collection failure stunt public service provision?," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 114(C), pages 288-300.
    8. Harrington, Elise & Athavankar, Ameya & Hsu, David, 2020. "Variation in rural household energy transitions for basic lighting in India," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 119(C).
    9. Ding, Haoyuan & Qin, Cong & Shi, Kang, 2018. "Development through electrification: Evidence from rural China," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 50(C), pages 313-328.
    10. Peters, Jörg & Sievert, Maximiliane & Toman, Michael A., 2019. "Rural electrification through mini-grids: Challenges ahead," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 132(C), pages 27-31.
    11. Kenneth Lee & Edward Miguel & Catherine Wolfram, 2016. "Experimental Evidence on the Demand for and Costs of Rural Electrification," NBER Working Papers 22292, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • O18 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Urban, Rural, Regional, and Transportation Analysis; Housing; Infrastructure
    • Q42 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Energy - - - Alternative Energy Sources

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