Factors affecting the adoption of solar power for domestic usage in Kajiado county, Kenya
Kenya envisions transforming itself into a newly-industrializing, middle-income country by 2030. With only 44% of Kenyans having access to Grid Electricity, solar technology provides the Kenyan government with the opportunity to address energy challenges without the need for expensive power generation projects, transmission and distribution networks. The objective of this study was to establish the factors affecting the adoption of solar power technology for domestic power usage, specifically to assess the extent to which the level of knowledge and awareness of solar technology influences adoption of domestic solar technology, to investigate the extent to which the level of income of households influences adoption of solar technology and finally the extent to which the availability of substitute power source influences adoption of solar technology. A descriptive survey design was undertaken in the study. A stratified random sampling was used to identify a sample and data was collected using questionnaires. A sample of 365 households was studied from a target population of 6733 households. Only 300 household heads responded which represented 82.5% of the targeted population. The findings indicate that the community has not adopted much to solar technology with only 32% using solar in the region. Out of the three variables studied, all agreed to the research hypotheses concluding that there was a significant relationship between the level of knowledge and awareness, level of income of households, availability of substitute power source and the adoption of solar technology. The results indicate that the level knowledge and awareness has a positive effect on adoption of solar technology, level of income of households has a negative effect, while availability of substitute power source does not positively influence the adoption of solar technology. The findings of the study may be of use to the Ministry of Energy, to the government in general and to most Energy Solution Companies including Kenya Power and Lighting Company as Kenya looks to achieve vision 2030.