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June 23, 2022

Power for All

Agriculture, Energy Access

Research Summary: Access to Energy Will Result in Better Human Development Outcomes

The agricultural sector has the potential to become a game-changer in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), where 80%of the production is from smallholder farmers. However, less than one in three farmers have electricity access. This study, conducted in three sites in Mukono district, Uganda, sheds light on how energy access can increase farm productivity and lead to better human development outcomes, including education and living standards.

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  • There are important differences in farm productivity between villages with and without energy access. The former sell at higher prices, produce more per acre of land and take less time to dry the harvest. 
  • Energy access also correlates with better human development indicators such as college attendance.  Powered villages achieved higher levels of education and increased resilience to economic shocks like COVID-19.
  • The grid-connected villages still have a great opportunity to amplify the impact of electricity access on productivity and development. The key to making this happen is to increase the use of electrical machinery in the production process, which will also significantly impact electricity consumption.

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