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Mixed Fuel Usage

2015-03-26 11:42:24

CASE STUDY: Mixed Fuel Usage in Indonesia

INTRODUCTION

Kerosene-to-LPG Conversion Program

The Indonesian Government’s Kerosene-to-LPG Program is considered one of the world’s largest efforts to promote clean cooking fuels. Since its inception in 2007, the program has successfully distributed LPG stoves and 3 kg LPG cylinders to more than 50 million households, including small and medium industries, and encouraged households to switch from kerosene to LPG as their main cooking fuel.

The fuel conversion program has significantly altered the landscape of household cooking fuel use. From 2007-2011, the proportion of households using LPG grew by 35 percent (from 11 to 45 percent) while the proportion of kerosene users declined by 25 percent (from 37 to 12 percent). Despite the substantial impact of the conversion program on shifting fuel usage from kerosene to LPG, the program has had a minimal impact on biomass cooking fuel users. From 2007 to 2010, the number of biomass wood fuel users that converted to LPG was only 9 percent of the total biomass user group.

The number of biomass users is expected to remain roughly the same in the coming years. While data indicate a 9 percent decline in biomass (especially wood) fuel users, field study observations suggest that many LPG users also use wood fuel in combination for a variety of cooking tasks. The above data on fuel conversion fails to account for users that have turned to LPG but continue to use biomass for certain cooking tasks.

Continuous Use of Biomass Alongside LPG

The apparent complexity of mixed fuel usage in Indonesia was confirmed by the fact shown in a study results conducted at the peri-urban areas of Yogyakarta which shows that there are three user segments: (i) biomass users, (ii) LPG users, and (iii) a combination of LPG and biomass users.1

The kerosene-to-LPG program has resulted in the conversion of 27 percent of households in the area to solely LPG users. Despite this, 48 percent of households use both LPG and biomass, while 25 percent use biomass fuel only. Additionally, the results of the field study reveal that 64 percent of households that uses LPG for cooking still also use wood fuel, in combination.

Despite a shift to LPG as a result of the conversion program and the increased use of electricity to power rice cookers and/or warmers, it is expected that biomass fuel and stoves will continue to be used in Indonesian households.

FACTORS AFFECTING FUEL TYPE USED

The main reasons for using wood fuel are typically cost and accessibility. From all the biomass fuel users surveyed, more than three quarters (78 percent) collect their firewood and 12 percent both collect and purchase what they use. These results are consistent with the 2009 GERES study in selected areas of Central Java and Yogyakarta Provinces. The GERES study reveals that choice of cooking fuel type is dependent on a variety of factors: 30 percent of respondents chose a fuel type because of subsidies or price; more than 25 percent prefer cheaper fuels; 15 percent said they prefer fuel that is easier to obtain; while other factors relate to taste, cleaner cooking environment and ease of use. Furthermore, the demographics of fuel usage indicate a strong correlation between fuel and stove choice and (a) age, (b) family size, (c) education, and (d) geographical differences.

This section will address (1) the demographics of users of each fuel type, and (2) what factors are considered by consumers in determining to use a fuel type (addressed with reference to local media and consumer testimonies).

(1) Demographics of user segments

Each fuel segment (LPG, biomass, and biomass with LPG) typically consists of users of a particular social demographic. Demographic factors that influence fuel usage include: (a) age, (b) family size, (c) education, and (d) geographical differences.

a. Age: Biomass cookstoves are especially popular among older cooks, with LPG stoves popular among the younger generation of cooks. The LPG and biomass user segment falls between other two market segments for its average age of cooks. Figure 5.1 illustrates this relationship between user age and fuel choice.

b. Family size: Typically, households with larger family size (on average 4.2 people) use a combination of LPG and biomass. This finding suggests that cooks in households with more family members have to prepare more food and rely on multiple fuel types for their more intensive cooking.

c. Education: LPG users tend to have achieved a higher level of education than biomass users, and than users that combine LPG with biomass. Data also suggest that time constraints, or pressures for time on cooks, do not have as strong an influence on fuel and stove choice as does education.

d. Household monthly income: Figures 3.2 and 3.4 compare the household monthly income among the three key market segments. The monthly income of households that use LPG is the highest and biomass is the lowest. The income level of those using both LPG and biomass is significantly higher than biomass only users and slightly lower than that of LPG users.

 
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