Biogas adoption and elucidating its impacts in India: Implications for policy uri icon

abstract

  • Indoor air pollution from the use of dirty fuel such as firewood, and dung cake for household chores is a serious health risk globally. Currently, 2.8 billion people in the world rely on dirty fuel for cooking and heating, of which more than 700 million (25%) people are from India. In 2016, 3.8 million premature deaths were attributable only to indoor air pollution, of which the total premature deaths due to indoor air pollution in India was 1.3 million (34%). One of the effective ways to combat indoor air pollution is a rapid dissemination of biogas technology. With nearly 300 million bovine animals, and 22% of rural agricultural households that completely rely on livestock for their livelihoods, India has a great potential to expand biogas technology and to combat the killer indoor air pollution. Currently, however, only 0.4% of the households in India reportedly use biogas. Using National Sample Survey Organization data, India, and applying an econometric estimation procedure, the present study demonstrates that both physical capital, such as landholdings and house ownership, and human capital, such as general education of the household head and spouse, can significantly affect the decision to use biogas. However, the positive decision to use biogas is negatively associated with the monthly expenditure on dirty fuel. The study, therefore, recommends the provision of general education as well as external supports in developing countries to increase awareness, as well as the adoption of domestic biogas digesters.

publication date

  • 2019
  • 2019