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Households’ willingness to pay for energy utilization of crop straw in rural China:Based on an improved UTAUT model

Ke He, Junbiao Zhang and Yangmei Zeng

Energy Policy, 2020, vol. 140, issue C

Abstract: Energy utilization of crop straw is of high economic, social and ecological benefit. In this paper, based on the beneficiary pays principle, we use biogas production from crop straw as an example and analyze households' willingness to pay (WTP) for the local government-led project on energy utilization of crop straw. “Interpersonal trust” and “institutional trust” variables are introduced to improve the unified theory of acceptance and use of technology (UTAUT) model, on the basis of which, Probit and Interval Regression Models are employed to explore the determinants of households' WTP. Results show that: 1) Most households are willing to pay for biogas utilization of crop straw, and the average expected value of households' WTP is about 20.72 RMB per household monthly; 2) Crop straw program cost and benefit trade-offs, convenience of logistics and technology, and trust factors all play an important role in households’ WTP; 3) If the cultivation of trust is neglected, even if households have high expectations for the ecological performance of biogas production from crop straw, their WTP will not be improved. Conclusions are summarized to provide an important reference for the formulation of policies to improve energy utilization of crop straw in developing countries or regions.

Keywords: Biogas production; Straw management; Willingness to pay; Sustainable development; Environmental protection; Trust (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
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DOI: 10.1016/j.enpol.2020.111373

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