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You are here: Home / MPRC People / Sonalde Desai, Ph.D. / Sonalde Desai Publications / Gender inequalities and household fuel choice in India

Pallavi Choudhuri and Sonalde Desai (In press)

Gender inequalities and household fuel choice in India

Journal of Cleaner Production.

The use of solid cooking fuels—wood, straw, crop residue, and cow-dung cakes—is associated with higher levels of environmental pollution and health burden. However, even in an era when incomes have grown and poverty has declined, the proportion of Indian households using clean cooking fuels such as kerosene or Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) has increased only slightly. Even among the wealthiest quintile, only about 40 percent of the households rely solely on clean fuel. Since the chores of cooking and collection of fuel remain primarily the domain of women, we argue that intra-household gender inequalities play an important role in shaping the household decision to invest in clean fuel. Analyses using data from the India Human Development Survey (IHDS), a panel survey of over 41,000 households conducted in two waves in 2004-05 and 2011–12, respectively, show that women's access to salaried work and control over household expenditure decisions is associated with the use of clean fuel.

Gender, India, Social and Economic Inequality, Desai, Gender, Family, and Social Change
First published online: April 17th, 2020

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