Is Coal-Fired Power Generation Associated with Rural Electrification? A Global Analysis
Forthcoming, Energy Research & Social Science
78 Pages Posted: 28 Aug 2019
Date Written: August 25, 2019
Using comprehensive data on power generation and energy access, we explore associations between coal-fired power generation and household electrification. We find that, although there is a strong between-country correlation between coal-fired power generation capacity and electricity access, the correlation disappears when we focus on within-country variation and control for secular trends. Further, statistical analyses using dynamic panel models show no evidence for the effect of coal-fired generation capacity on electrification rates. These results suggest that increases in coal-fired power generation may not have played an important role in promoting rural electrification in recent decades, calling into question the relationship between coal-fired power generation and energy access. The findings also imply that rural electrification can advance without the greenhouse gas emissions from coal combustion in electricity generation.
Keywords: energy access; energy poverty; rural electrification; coal
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