Radha’s Message for May 2015
Like many of the people I’ve talked with in recent weeks, I have been noticing a steady growth of momentum across the clean cooking sector.
At the World Health Assembly, which closed last week, delegates adopted a resolution to address the health impacts of air pollution – the world’s largest single environmental health risk. This is a significant step for clean cooking in that it urges Member States to develop air quality monitoring systems and health registries to improve surveillance for all illnesses related to air pollution; to promote clean cooking, heating and lighting technologies and fuels; and to strengthen international transfer of expertise, technologies and scientific data in the field of air pollution.
At this month’s Sustainable Energy for All Forum in New York, we saw an expanded focus on improving access to clean cookstoves and fuels. The Forum included engaging discussions on financing, gender-informed business models, and the energy-health nexus, as well as first-time sessions on enhancing the clean fuels marketplace, reducing short-lived climate pollutants through clean cooking, and improving access to cooking energy in humanitarian settings.
While at the Forum, I joined the World Bank’s Senior Director for Energy and Extractives Anita George to release a comprehensive mapping of the clean cooking sector. The report, a result of the Alliance’s long-time partnership with the Bank, identified the “huge potential” of the cookstoves and fuels market and highlighted the need to utilize market-based approaches to maximize sustainability, adoption, and impact.
As part of our work, the Alliance also recently co-hosted two major convenings. The first meeting in Nepal revealed preliminary findings of multiple studies on the impact of clean cookstoves and fuels on children’s health. The second workshop in Peru advanced the global agenda on defining and measuring adoption of clean cooking solutions.
The momentum is spilling over into the private sector as well, as multiple stove manufacturers from around the world are reaching major milestones in stove distribution, including StovePlus reaching its 50,000th, Proyecto Mirador hitting its 100,000th, and Envirofit’s expected 1,000,000th stove later this year. Congratulations to these longtime Alliance partners helping to scale production, distribution, and impact!
The energy around access to clean cookstoves and fuels is also feeding into the critical conversations of 2015, particularly those surrounding the Sustainable Development Goals, Financing for Development, and the COP climate negotiations. It is essential that the international community scale and replicate effective models like the Alliance to increase energy access and reduce emissions of greenhouse gases and short-lived climate pollutants.
And finally, we’re excited to announce the launch of website for Clean Cooking Forum 2015, www.cleancooking2015.org, our global biennial event taking place in Accra, Ghana in November.
I look forward to working with you all to ensure that we continue building on this energy throughout this momentous year.