Waste Not: Can Biogas Deliver Sustainable Development?

Type Working Paper
Title Waste Not: Can Biogas Deliver Sustainable Development?
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2016
URL http://www.robynmeeks.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/Waste_Not_web_20161116.pdf
Household biogas systems are a renewable energy technology with the potential
to provide sustainable development benefits by reducing dependence on
traditional fuels and by shifting household time budgets towards higher value
activities. We estimate the environmental and socioeconomic impacts of biogas
expansion in Nepal using an instrumental variables approach that exploits
variation in access to biogas installation companies. We confirm prior evidence
that biogas use significantly reduces both collected and purchased fuelwood. We
find new evidence that biogas substantially changes labor allocations and
increases time spent on education. We do not detect robust impacts of biogas on
increased local forest cover overall, but we find evidence of positive impacts
when biogas is paired with forest protection policies. Together the results suggest
that biogas can improve environmental and socioeconomic conditions,
particularly in combination with complimentary opportunities or policies.

Related studies