$2.2bn pledged to support clean-cooking access in Africa

14th May 2024 By: Terence Creamer - Creamer Media Editor

$2.2bn pledged to support clean-cooking access in Africa

IEA executive director Fatih Biro

Pledges worth $2.2-billion to support clean-cooking access in Africa were made at a summit in France on Tuesday, convened by the International Energy Agency (IEA).

It is estimated that more than one-billion people in Africa currently lack access to clean-cooking solutions and instead cook over open fires and basic stoves, using charcoal, wood, agricultural waste, and animal dung as fuel.

In the process, harmful fumes and smoke are inhaled with dire health consequences, particularly for women and children, including high numbers of premature deaths.

Opportunities for education, employment and independence are also limited because women instead spend hours each day foraging for rudimentary fuels.

IEA executive director Fatih Birol said the funding could help support fundamental rights such as health, gender equality and education while also reducing emissions and restoring forests.

Following the summit, the IEA would use tracking methods to ensure that pledges and commitments were fulfilled.

In addition the agency would continue to play a convening role to engage more willing partners and generate new funds to help meet the $4-billion a year in capital investments required between now and 2030.

“Reaching this level of funding would enable the world to deploy the stoves and fuel delivery infrastructure needed to reach universal access to clean cooking in sub-Saharan Africa,” the IEA said in a statement.

At the Summit, more than 100 countries, international institutions, companies and civil society organisations also signed onto The Clean Cooking Declaration.

In doing so, they pledged to make the issue a priority and to enhance efforts toward achieving universal access, with two-billion people globally estimated as not having access to clean cooking.

TotalEnergies announced that it would invest more than $400-million in the development of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) for cooking and would develop digital pay-as-you-cook technologies to allow customers to pay as they used an LPG cylinder, rather than having to pay the full value upfront.

In addition, the Global LPG Partnership and the African Refiners and Distributors Association announced their intention to raise a $1-billion fund to enable clean cooking with LPG.

The World Liquid Gas Association (WLGA), meanwhile, announced the establishment of the Cooking For Life Africa Task Force, an industry initiative to promote increased access to affordable and sustainable LPG for cooking across Africa. This will include developing an Africa LPG Roadmap, to be launched at COP29.