November 21: Ninety five out of 100 households in Nepal have access to electricity, while 72 out of 100 have access to reliable, affordable and uninterrupted access to electricity for a significant part of the day, according to a first-of-its-kind national survey conducted by the World Bank in 2017.
The survey report says 70 out of 100 households continue to use firewood and other polluting and harmful fuels for cooking in Nepal despite progress on the coverage and quality of electricity access.
About 67 percent of households had uninterrupted access to electricity for at least eight hours a day, where supply is affordable, reliable and conducive for the use of household appliances like fans and televisions, the report further said.
The World Bank said in a statement that overall 71.7 percent of households drew electricity from the national grid, while 23 percent were connected to off-grid sources like micro or mini-hydro and solar power.
“Since this 2017 survey, Nepal has made further progress by increasing grid electrified population from 72% to 78%. The country has been free from power cuts since 2018. We celebrate these achievements made by Nepal and are very proud of being a partner with the government in further improving the quality of energy services for lighting and clean cooking and better the life of the people in Nepal,” stated Faris H Hadad-Zervos, World Bank’s country manager for Nepal.
The Nepal national household-level survey is part of the Global Survey on Energy Access, which relies on the Multi-Tier Framework (MTF) approach piloted by the World Bank with the support of the Energy Sector Management Assistance Program (ESMAP). The World Bank claimed that this is the first time a survey has tracked the quality of electricity access across households in Nepal, compared to a more conventional, binary approach.
Despite progress on the quality of electricity access, clean cooking remains a challenge for Nepal. Firewood, which is polluting and causes a myriad of heath issues particularly for women and children, remains the most widely used source of cooking fuel. About 73.5 percent of households said they cook with firewood, animal waste, crop residue or plant biomass. Less than 2 out of 10 households – about 17.5 percent – have access to modern cooking services, according to the survey.
The report was launched at the seventh edition of the Power Summit organized by the Independent Power Producers Association of Nepal in Kathmandu on November 21-22.