IJERPH | Free Full-Text | Multidimensional Energy Poverty and Mental Health: Micro-Level Evidence from Ghana


Regardless of growing interest and awareness of the effect of energy poverty on mental health, studies on this linkage have mainly relied on unidimensional measures of energy poverty with much concentration on advanced economies. Employing a two-wave socioeconomic survey, we analyzed the impact of multidimensional energy poverty on mental health in Ghana. We found energy poverty to heighten the chances of being mentally unhealthy. Using prices of liquefied petroleum gas and electricity as instruments for multidimensional energy poverty, we found that a rise in energy deprivation is associated with a 0.562-, 1.494- and 1.867-fold increase in the odds of being mildly, moderately and severely depressed, respectively. Among the indicators of multidimensional energy poverty, a deprivation in household appliance ownership (refrigerator ownership), recorded the highest impact on the depression levels of household heads. We concluded by urging policymakers to adopt a holistic approach in solving issues of energy poverty where simultaneous attention is given to all the dimensions of energy poverty since they collectively have detrimental effects on mental health, especially in a developing country setting.

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