Everyday women and children are exposed to the toxic smoke emitted while cooking with solid biomass fuels while using traditional stoves. This severely affects their health. The heavy dependence on Biomass fuels for cooking and heating is further worsening the degradation of forest resources and natural vegetation cover, causing serious environmental problems.
Efficient and clean cooking solutions(cookstoves and fuels), that would have helped, are not sufficiently available or accessible to the majority of the population. Similarly, the level of awareness regarding the clean cooking issues and their importance in the whole socio economic context is still inadequate resulting in an undeveloped market for the clean cooking solutions.
In Uganda, 94% of rural households cook over an open fire; in urban areas they cook on inefficient charcoal stoves leading to deforestation and climate change.
Poor families in Uganda spend up to 15% of their income on charcoal or wood.
2 million people die annually from sicknesses that are caused by breathing in smoke in their houses.
Evidence based awareness needs to be created at different levels of the Ugandan society; from policy makers to regulatory agencies, clean cooking service providers for the households and institutions that need to adopt these clean cooking solutions. Furthermore, clean cooking solutions should be available and accessible to the Ugandan society sustainably, whereby sustainable production, supply chains and access to finance is created and maintained.
Conducive policy, legalities and frameworks have to be established that support the promotion of clean cooking solutions in all sectors of the economy. Institutional structures that support the development, improvement and enforcement of quality standards and foster innovation and a level playing ground in the market need to be in place.
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We have to promote understanding and knowledge based empowering awareness on the issues of the clean cooking sector and its requirements, as well as cooperation and synergy among the stakeholders through different means and avenues, customised to each group of stakeholders.
We will have to introduce and promote innovation in technological solutions through research and development, technology transfer and local technical capacity development.
Similarly, there is a need to introduce and promote innovative BUSINESS models that enhance extensive and sustainable distribution of clean cooking solutions as well as access to finance for the society at large to enhance actual adoption.
We need to promote the introduction of policies and directives that directly promote clean cooking solutions at institutional as well as household levels and also institutions that introduce and enforce quality standards for the clean cooking solutions.
For the good part of the past 3 decades several organizations projects, and programs have been promoting different improved stoves mainly from the fuel saving and environmental protection point of view and of recent more from the indoor air pollution point of view. However, the efforts so far had been lacking sufficient funding and coordination and hence also scale to reach a critical adoption rate of the improved cookstoves.
It is in response to this situation in the Ugandan context that the Ugandan Alliance for Clean Cooking was established.
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