Inside India’s energy access revolution
- Abhishek Jain
Inside India’s energy access revolution: Mind the gap
April 9, 2019 | 5:00 – 7:00 PM EST
Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies
1619 Massachusetts Ave. NW 20036
For decades, India has carried the infamous badge to be home to the world’ largest population deprived of modern forms of energy – both electricity and cooking. But India is rapidly breaking away from that reality. As per official statistics, more than 99 per cent willing households in India have an electricity connection, and close to 90 per cent of Indian households have an LPG connection. Over the last 16 months, India provided electricity connections to 50,000 households on average, every single day. In less than three years, 70 million subsidized LPG connections have been provided. The pace of change is unprecedent, globally. However, is energy access only about connections?
To uncover the nuances and multidimensionality of energy access, Council on Energy, Environment and Water (CEEW), along with ISEP and National University of Singapore, conducted a panel survey of more than 9,000 households, tracking them over three years. Based on the findings from the largest panel data on multidimensional energy access in India, the discussion will cover the realities of energy access in India as experienced by the end-users, its evolution, the gap between connections and sustained use, the challenge of reliability, affordability, awareness, and the role of intra-household decision-making dynamics in influencing energy access.
Abhishek Jain is a Senior Programme Lead at the Council on Energy, Environment and Water. He built and leads The Council’s practice on Energy Access, where, along with his team, he focuses on provision of modern forms of energy for all. His research (and action) spans energy access for households, communities, and livelihoods. He co-conceptualised and leads CEEW’s flagship research effort, Access to Clean Cooking energy and Electricity – Survey of States (ACCESS), the largest panel survey on multidimensional energy access in India. In over eight years of experience, Abhishek has focused on various issues including renewable energy, decentralised energy access, clean cooking energy, LPG for cooking, fossil fuel subsidies, electricity sector reforms, solar-powered irrigation, and circular economy.
Abhishek has published in leading journals such as Nature Energy, and has contributed chapters in several books. He regularly speaks at various national and international forums, writes in leading national dailies, and advises various government departments. He holds an MPhil in Sustainable Development from the University of Cambridge and a BTech in mechanical engineering from IIT Roorkee.