Cooking with Modern Energy in Rural Households of India
A Cost–Benefit Analysis
Keywords:LPG, Electricity, Cost-Benefit Analysis, Energy, Policy, Social, Cooking
Between 2016 and 2019, there has been an improvement in the percentage of rural households using clean cooking energy, partly owing to government interventions. However, unclean solid fuels are still the primary source of energy for cooking purposes for about 60% of rural households. One of the foremost reasons for this is the cost of acquiring and using clean energy sources. This paper estimates the cost incurred by a household when switching from solid fuels to liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) or electricity for cooking, followed by a social cost–benefit analysis of two interventions: universal provision of LPG to all rural households and universal provision of electricity to all rural households. The findings suggest that electricity is a cheaper alternative to LPG at the household level; however, investing in the universal provision of LPG is socially beneficial for the government. Universal provision of electricity for cooking can only become socially beneficial if the proportion of renewable electricity increases, reducing the environmental costs of carbon emissions from coal-based power plants.
Keywords: LPG, electricity, cost, benefit, social, energy
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