Mapping fuel mix in rural areas: A case study of interfuel substitution in Doda District (J&K)

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Author: 
Maliha Batool and Prakash Antahal
Abstract: 

Fuel is a substance which when burns provide heat or power or the substance act as a store of energy for which it may be made to react in a way with the releases of energy in the form of heat, a substance that release energy to be used for work, while making it to react with other substance. This energy released from the fuel is the most important component of all human activities, providing services like heating, cooking, lighting, generating industrial output, mineral extraction and transportation. It is the most powerful engine of socio economic development and lies at the base of industrial economy. Without ensuring a minimum access to energy no county can be able to develop beyond a subsistence level. Not just one type of fuel is used but different types of fuels are used. In fact people also show a habit to use different types of fuels at the same time which means they show a tendency to use fuel mix at a particular point of time and they also show a feature where they substitute the traditional energy source by modern fuel with the improvement in the income level. So the study aims to examine the status of fuel mix used in the study area and to identify the demand side and supply side determinants of fuel demand. For this 120 households have been selected from four villages of two blocks (two from each). And we have found that maximum people in the area are dependent firewood and others are using fuel mix comprising of two or more fuels. Those who are firewood users wish to switch from firewood to other modern fuel but have no ample resources to fulfill their wish of using modern fuel and the remaining who do not wish to switch is only due to the fact they are suffering from extreme poverty due to which they first want to meet their basic wants like food, clothing, education of their children. Therefore there is a need that the government, first it has to fulfill the basic requirements of the people and to provide them facilities of modern fuel like LPG either at lower price or to freely distribute the same.

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