United Nations Development Programme
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NBER Working Papers and Publications
|May 2013||How Pro-Poor Growth Affects the Demand for Energy|
with Paul Gertler, Orie Shelef, Catherine Wolfram: w19092
Most of the future growth in energy use is forecast to come from the developing world. Understanding the likely pace and specific location of this growth is essential to inform decisions about energy infrastructure investments and to improve greenhouse gas emissions forecasts. We argue that countries with pro-poor economic growth will experience larger increases in energy demand than countries where growth is more regressive. When poor households' incomes go up, their energy demand increases along the extensive margin as they buy energy-using assets for the first time. We also argue that the speed at which households come out of poverty affects their asset purchase decisions.
We provide empirical support for these hypotheses by examining the causal impact of increases in household income...
|May 2012||Cash for Coolers|
with Lucas W. Davis, Paul J. Gertler: w18044
This paper examines a large-scale appliance replacement program in Mexico that since 2009 has helped 1.5 million households replace their old refrigerators and air-conditioners with energy-efficient models. Using household-level electric billing records from the population of Mexican residential customers we find that refrigerator replacement reduces electricity consumption by an average of 11 kilowatt hours per month, about a 7% decrease. We find that air conditioning replacement, in contrast, increases electricity consumption by an average of 6 kilowatt hours per month, with larger increases during the summer. To put these results in context we present a simple conceptual framework in which energy-efficient durable goods cost less to operate, so households use them more. This behavioral ...
Published: Cash for Coolers: Evaluating a Large-Scale Appliance Replacement Program in Mexico” (with Alan Fuchs and Paul Gertler), American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, vol. 6, no. 4, November 2014 (pp. 207-38).