The project aims at significantly reducing wood fuel consumption of Ghanaian users (households, communities, small and medium enterprises) by providing them with affordable improved cook stoves (ICS). Reduction in needs for wood energy relieves workload associated to collecting and needs for buying. The project improves lifestyles of vulnerable people, women especially, while limiting deforestation. It also leads to poverty reduction, including through higher employment and promotion of local markets.
This project therefore participates to build resilience and enhance adaptation and development capacities. Decidedly solidarity-based, it relies on ethiCarbon Afrique® to mobilize the necessary funding.
According to the information gathered by Ghana’s Energy Commission and Forestry Commission with the assistance of the FAO (FAO, 2002) , wood-fuels account for 78 % of all primary energy consumption in the Ghana, being the predominant source of energy for households and small industries. Ghanaians depend on solid fuels for domestic and commercial use and this has been the pattern over the years. In 2008, 82 % of households are using wood-fuels for cooking (Peprah, 2010); charcoal and wood fuel consumption is expected to increase in the future due to population growth. Ghana’s forest resources are thus subject to many pressures.
Deforestation and degradation resulting from increased population pressure, inefficient cooking practices, wasteful fuel wood harvesting including inefficient charcoal production are common in Ghana. According to Peter Takyi Peprah from Ghana’s government statistical service, the high consumption of solid fuel is depleting the solid fuel resources at a faster rate; the effects include destruction of the ecosystem and the habitats of the animal species in Ghanaian forest and exposes water bodies to dry up and gradually affecting the rainfall pattern and the climatic conditions of the country. Smoke from wood-fuel is identified as the leading cause of acute respiratory infections and eye problems among children under 5 years and women (Peprah, 2010).
Compared to the currently used three-stone fires system or traditional stoves, the ICS is an improved charcoal burning cook stove allowing quicker heating-up, longer cooking and heat retaining with less wood fuel as well as lower combustion fumes. It results in significant benefits:
This project fully enters within the scope and the vision of ethiCarbon Afrique®: it is decidedly solidarity based and ethical, participates to reduce vulnerability of the target population to the impacts of climate change, improve inhabitants’ lifestyles, particularly of women, alleviate poverty and has strong co-benefits in terms of mitigation through a reduction of wood use. It fits national development priorities, and skills and knowledge are transferred to local people so that they become the main actors of their development.
From an economic perspective, this project generates savings in the long term as well as annual certified emissions reduction (CERs). Our partner made the choice to keep parts of the CERs for the ethiCarbon Afrique® initiative, so that they serve ethical and solidarity purposes. The funds generated will be used for social needs such as education, building capacities, awareness raising, creation of cooperatives and women associations, scholarships, etc. This innovative approach is the key contribution from ethiCarbon Afrique®, an approach to which anyone can participate.
The use of ICS is widely accepted as an alternative to traditional stoves to reduce environmental degradation and improve health and comfort in African households. The transfer of technology and know-how within the framework of the project will enable duplication at local level, and the project itself will serve as a benchmark for scaling up such initiatives. Similar programs were carried out in Africa: in Benin, 107 000 improved cooking stoves were sold in just 6 years within the framework of another ICS project, reaching over half a million people and saving about 15 tons of wood annually .
More info and credit pictures:
Aera group website: http://aera-group.fr/activities/investment/