A First Step Up the Energy Ladder? Low Cost Solar Kits and Household's Welfare in Rural Rwanda

80 Pages Posted: 13 Oct 2016

See all articles by Michael Grimm

Michael Grimm

Erasmus University Rotterdam; University of Passau; IZA; DIW Berlin

Anicet Munyehirwe

IB&C (Rwanda)

Jörg Peters

RWI - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research; University of Passau - Business Administration and Economics

Maximiliane Sievert

RWI - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research

Multiple version iconThere are 4 versions of this paper

Date Written: October 12, 2016

Abstract

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.

Keywords: City to City Alliances, Urban Economic Development, Urban Communities, Inequality, Regional Urban Development, National Urban Development Policies & Strategies, Urban Economics

Suggested Citation

Grimm, Michael and Munyehirwe, Anicet and Peters, Jörg and Sievert, Maximiliane, A First Step Up the Energy Ladder? Low Cost Solar Kits and Household's Welfare in Rural Rwanda (October 12, 2016). World Bank Policy Research Working Paper No. 7859. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2851660

Michael Grimm (Contact Author)

Erasmus University Rotterdam ( email )

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University of Passau ( email )

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DIW Berlin ( email )

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Anicet Munyehirwe

IB&C (Rwanda)

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Kigali
Rwanda

Jörg Peters

RWI - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research ( email )

Hohenzollernstr. 1-3
45128 Essen
Germany
0049-201-8149-247 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.rwi-essen.de

University of Passau - Business Administration and Economics ( email )

Wirtschaftswissenschaftliche Fakultaet
Passau, D-94030
Germany

Maximiliane Sievert

RWI - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research ( email )

Hohenzollernstr. 1-3
Essen, 45128
Germany

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