Inaugural SDG Report Highlights Progress on SDGs and Clean Cooking
The Sustainable Development Goals Report 2016 was released in July 2016, presenting illustrative, current data to show where the world stands on achieving the global goals. Clean cooking and related issues have been incorporated into the 2030 Agenda, as a result of advocacy by the Alliance and its partners. Consequently, this Report notes the widespread and pressing challenges that must be met, including clean cooking, air pollution, and women’s unpaid work due to household duties like cooking and collecting fuels.
Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 7 calls for “access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all,” and one of the indicators meant to measure the success of this SDG specifically covers household energy access for cooking and other tasks. The Report notes that three billion people are still reliant on polluting, inefficient cooking methods, thus living in energy poverty. While this data reflects a grim global situation, it is hopeful to see increasing global attention on this issue. The data, as well as the growing body of evidence that shows the relationship between inefficient cooking and health, environmental, economic, and gender consequences, especially compared to the positive impacts of the adoption of clean cooking solutions, make the case for prudent action through the market-based, multi-stakeholder approach that is underway and yielding results.
The Report also necessitates action on issues linked to cooking energy throughout the SDGs, including mitigating exposure to high levels of air pollution and recognizing and reducing unpaid work burdens that disproportionately fall on women and girls. This SDG Report, as well as many other analyses, note that much of this unpaid work is due to domestic responsibilities like cooking. Some of this burden can be removed through household energy interventions, specifically improving access to clean and efficient cookstoves and fuels.
With clean cooking now firmly poised for advancement in pursuit of the SDGs, the Alliance remains eager to support further development in the sector and enable greater adoption of clean cooking solutions by millions of households. In order to present progressively positive data in future SDG reporting and enable cross-cutting development gains, we must accelerate efforts to scale clean cooking.