An increasing number of empirical studies have investigated the determinants of cooking fuel choice in developing countries, where health risks from household air pollution are one of the most important issues. We contribute to this stream of literature by examining individuals’ subjective probabilistic expectations about health risks when using different types of fuel and their role in cooking fuel usage patterns. We also explore how these patterns, in turn, are associated with health status. Using data collected from 557 rural Indian households, we find that subjective probabilistic expectations of becoming sick from dirty fuel usage are negatively and significantly associated with the fraction of days of dirty fuel usage in households. Concurrently, dirty fuel usage and self-reported health status of the individual being sick are also significantly correlated. We then conduct a policy simulation of information provision regarding the health risks of dirty fuel usage. Our simulation demonstrates that although the provision of information results in statistically significant changes in households’ cooking fuel usage patterns and in individuals’ health status, these changes may be small in size.
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