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Off-grid Solar PV: Is it an affordable or an appropriate solution for rural electrification in sub-Saharan African countries?

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  • Glenn P. Jenkins

    (Queen’s University, Canada and Eastern Mediterranean University, North Cyprus)

  • Saule Baurzhan

    (Eastern Mediterranean University, North Cyprus)

Abstract

In this paper the feasibility of off-grid solar PV systems in Sub Sahara Africa (SSA) is analysed focusing on five major issues in the context of falling system costs: cost-effectiveness, affordability, financing, environmental impact, and poverty alleviation. Solar PV systems are found to be an extremely costly source of electricity for the rural poor in SSA. It is estimated that it will take at least 16.8 years for solar PV systems to become competitive with small diesel generators. The cost of reducing CO2 emissions through solar PV electrification is far in excess of the estimated marginal economic cost of CO2.

Suggested Citation

  • Glenn P. Jenkins & Saule Baurzhan, 2014. "Off-grid Solar PV: Is it an affordable or an appropriate solution for rural electrification in sub-Saharan African countries?," Development Discussion Papers 2014-07, JDI Executive Programs.
  • Handle: RePEc:qed:dpaper:269
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Solar PV; rural electrification; sub-Saharan Africa; affordability; CO2 emissions;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • Q42 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Energy - - - Alternative Energy Sources
    • O55 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Africa

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