Radha’s Message for July 2016
Greetings from a very hot and humid Washington, DC.
Despite the heat, there's been intense activity around the sector, both in Alliance focus countries and beyond. Governments, donors, and implementing organizations are recognizing the important role that clean cookstoves and fuels can play in meeting Sustainable Development Goals and climate action plans. And more and more people are gaining access to clean cooking technologies every day.
As many of you know the Alliance approach to the sector has been built on three pillars. In addition to fostering an enabling environment through establishing sector-friendly policies, rigorous research, and high performance standards, we have also focused on strengthening supply through support for growing cookstove and fuel enterprises to help them get to the point of investment readiness. As these initial two areas continue to mature, we are placing added emphasis on the third pillar — enhancing consumer demand.
As part of efforts to drive adoption of clean cookstoves and fuels around the world, the Alliance is investing in programs that educate potential users and drive change in consumer behaviors, two of the biggest hurdles facing cookstove adoption. This month, we announced funding for four organizations to design and manage behavior change communication interventions in Bangladesh, Kenya and Nigeria. This builds on the success of ongoing campaigns in Uganda, Ghana, and Guatemala where thousands of consumers are learning about – and also buying – cleaner, more efficient stoves and fuels. We will continue to focus on identifying and working with partners who have strong on the ground presence and last mile reach and are able to add cookstoves and fuels to existing products and/or services that they are providing to similar target audiences.
The Alliance Secretariat also provided supporting evidence and market research this month to several foundations and international organizations exploring investment in household air pollution and clean cooking. We are seeing interest from groups increasingly interested in providing finance to both entrepreneurs and potential consumers, as well as from government and investors interested in those stoves and fuels that meet Tier 3 and above standards to achieve health impacts.
I also had the pleasure this month of participating in the White House Global Development Summit. Based on the speaker topics and engaging content, from energy and gender to climate and global health, it was clear how clean cooking is critical to supporting the Obama administration's development agenda. It also continues to be evident that climate change could undermine progress in many other sectors, and that issues like ours – with benefits across multiple sectors — will be even more important to reaching our shared global goals.
Finally, a sincere thank you to all of you who have already shared your 2015 results with us. As you may have seen we simplified the reporting process this year – for those who haven't already submitted your information, I invite you to visit the survey online as soon as possible before the deadline closes next week!