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A first step up the energy ladder ? low cost solar kits and household's welfare in Rural Rwanda

Listed author(s):
  • Grimm,Michael
  • Munyehirwe,Anicet
  • Peters,Jorg
  • Sievert,Maximiliane

More than 1.1 billion people in developing countries are lacking access to electricity. Based on the assumption that electricity is a prerequisite for human development, the United Nations has proclaimed the goal of providing electricity to all by 2030. In recent years, Pico-Photovoltaic kits have become a low-cost alternative to investment intensive grid electrification. Using a randomized controlled trial, the paper examines uptake and impacts of a simple Pico-Photovoltaic kit that barely exceeds the modern energy benchmark defined by the United Nations. The authors find significant positive effects on household energy expenditures and some indication for effects on health, domestic productivity, and on the environment. Since only parts of these effects are internalized, underinvestment into the technology is likely. In addition, our data show that adoption will be impeded by affordability, suggesting that policy would have to consider more direct promotion strategies such as subsidies or financing schemes to reach the UN goal.

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File URL: http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/966011476292381076/pdf/WPS7859.pdf
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Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 7859.

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Date of creation: 12 Oct 2016
Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:7859
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  1. Gunther Bensch & Jochen Kluve & Jörg Peters, 2011. "Impacts of rural electrification in Rwanda," Journal of Development Effectiveness, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 3(4), pages 567-588, December.
  2. Peters, Jörg & Vance, Colin & Harsdorff, Marek, 2011. "Grid Extension in Rural Benin: Micro-Manufacturers and the Electrification Trap," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 39(5), pages 773-783, May.
  3. Taryn Dinkelman, 2011. "The Effects of Rural Electrification on Employment: New Evidence from South Africa," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(7), pages 3078-3108, December.
  4. van de Walle, Dominique & Ravallion, Martin & Mendiratta, Vibhuti & Koolwal, Gayatri, 2013. "Long-term impacts of household electrification in rural India," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6527, The World Bank.
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  6. Grogan, Louise & Sadanand, Asha, 2013. "Rural Electrification and Employment in Poor Countries: Evidence from Nicaragua," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 43(C), pages 252-265.
  7. Suresh de Mel & David McKenzie & Christopher Woodruff, 2009. "Returns to Capital in Microenterprises: Evidence from a Field Experiment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 124(1), pages 423-423.
  8. Eliana La Ferrara & Alberto Chong & Suzanne Duryea, 2012. "Soap Operas and Fertility: Evidence from Brazil," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 4(4), pages 1-31, October.
  9. Miriam Bruhn & David McKenzie, 2009. "In Pursuit of Balance: Randomization in Practice in Development Field Experiments," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 1(4), pages 200-232, October.
  10. Nava Ashraf & James Berry & Jesse M. Shapiro, 2010. "Can Higher Prices Stimulate Product Use? Evidence from a Field Experiment in Zambia," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(5), pages 2383-2413, December.
  11. Alessandro Tarozzi & Aprajit Mahajan & Brian Blackburn & Dan Kopf & Lakshmi Krishnan & Joanne Yoong, 2014. "Micro-loans, Insecticide-Treated Bednets, and Malaria: Evidence from a Randomized Controlled Trial in Orissa, India," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 104(7), pages 1909-1941, July.
  12. Tanguy Bernard, 2012. "Impact Analysis of Rural Electrification Projects in Sub-Saharan Africa," World Bank Research Observer, World Bank Group, vol. 27(1), pages 33-51, February.
  13. Michael Grimm & Robert Sparrow & Luca Tasciotti, 2015. "Does Electrification Spur the Fertility Transition? Evidence From Indonesia," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 52(5), pages 1773-1796, October.
  14. Jessica Cohen & Pascaline Dupas, 2008. "Free Distribution or Cost-Sharing? Evidence from a Malaria Prevention Experiment," NBER Working Papers 14406, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Rud, Juan Pablo, 2012. "Electricity provision and industrial development: Evidence from India," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 97(2), pages 352-367.
  16. Jessica Cohen & Pascaline Dupas, 2010. "Free Distribution or Cost-Sharing? Evidence from a Randomized Malaria Prevention Experiment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 125(1), pages 1-45.
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