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By Mary Mwendwa

Clean stoves innovation was one of the biggest attractions at this year’s Agricultural Show of Kenya ( ASK ).

It has been reported that households, especially in rural settings waste a lot of time and resources when they don’t use clean energy as a source of energy.

World Energy Outlook reveals that close to 2.7 billion people rely on traditional cookstoves and open fires which end up affecting their health and environment.

Similarly, climate change-related catastrophes have adversely affected low-income countries whose uptake and usage of renewable energy is still low.

Reduction in carbon emissions has been cited as one of the ways to mitigate against climate change and clean cooking has ben cited as one of the key interventions to mitigate climate change.

To solve this problem clean stoves have been developed to try and make households access clean energy solutions that would help them alleviate poverty and have a healthy life.

Ecozoom Jikos is one unique project that has come up with a variety of fuel-saving stoves that come handy.

According to Noreen Kinanja, Marketing and Communications associate at Ecozoom company , they have developed affordable clean cook stoves which save on money and health risks  , “Our jikos save up to ksh.2000 on charcoal and 70 percent less charcoal. The jikos have a lifetime of five years and produce less smoke.”

An employee of Ecozoom company displaying some of the clean cookstove samples at the ASK that was recently held in Nairobi / Mary Mwendwa

Kinanja explained  how the jikos come in variety of forms  ranging from Jiko Bora which uses minimal charcoal and retails for ksh. 3, 900, Jiko fresh Ksh, 3,200 and finally, Jiko Dura which uses firewood  and goes for Ksh. 3, 800 .

“We have a huge customer base and for those who reside in Nairobi we deliver at no cost but those in other far areas we charge them transportation cost.”

Myra Mukulu, CEO Clean Stoves Association of Kenya confirms how they have been working in Kenya since 2012.”Clean stoves association was founded in 2012 to promote clean cooking which is energy efficient which also saves cost.We work with many stakeholders from government, NGOs and companies who train communities on clean cooking technology.We are a membership organization with about 35 members both local and international.”

She further notes, “We advocate for technology that is energy efficient, the technology that can save lives and environment from pollution.”

Mukulu says they work with about 35 members both local and international .She emphasizes that private they don’t just promote clean stoves but they advocate for fuels and incentives from government and consumers to know that there are better options.

Mukulu says they did a survery on clean cookstoves some time back, “From a preliminary survey we did in 2014  the Uptake of clean stoves in Kenya was  3.3  million people , this is almost 40 percent ,we need to have a proper survey to be done on the update of clean stoves to provide a true picture of the status of adoption.”

Harm Duiken , Country Director , SNV in Kenya says they have many projects they support on clean energy.” One of the areas we support is clean cooking, we made a commitment in Newyork at the clean cookstove summit to give 1 million people clean stoves in Africa.We have been supporting different projects on clean energy, a good example is 20,000 biogas installations in Kenya.”

He further says , “ We  have supported many organizations in distributing 350 thousand clean cookstoves.”

Duiken notes how indoor pollution has been a major threat to women in Africa .”Reports indicate that In Kenya 15,700 kenyans die because of indoor pollution and this is something has to be changed.Together with Clean Cookstoves Association of Kenya  we are working towards changing this trend through use of clean cookstoves.”

“We have different projects in Kenya and also supporting microfinance Institutions (MFIs) for people to access soft loans to buy clean cookstoves.We support policy and advocacy where funding comes from the Dutch government.As SNV we always look at the markets, we don’t give technologies for free people have to see the value of clean cooking stoves,” Duiken Concludes.



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