Energy Ministry pursues investment strategy for clean cooking

The Ministry of Energy is developing a national clean cooking strategy and an investment prospectus to open up the industry for more business opportunities.
The Minister of Energy, Dr Mathew Opoku Prempeh, who announced this, said the strategy and investment documents were being developed with support from the World Bank, and would serve as the framework for the promotion and development of the clean cooking industry in the country.

At the opening plenary of the 2022 Global Clean Cooking Forum in Accra last Tuesday, Dr Opoku Prempeh said as demand for clean cooking solutions was growing, the country needed to turn attention to the efficient exploitation of the natural resources that were required for the industry.

Government policies and interventions by key partners, he said, had positively impacted the clean cooking market and kept it on track for investments, scaling up and commercialisation.

“We need effective coordination and transparent accounting systems that are internationally acceptable, to unlock the enormous investment and financing opportunities available for the clean cooking sector,” he said.

The strategy document and the investment prospectus, Dr Opoku Prempeh said, would be completed and launched by the end of the year.

The two-day international forum being hosted for the second time in the country by Clean Cooking Alliance and the government has attracted more than 600 attendees from over 50 countries.

The forum has brought together investors, executives, government officials, academics, and advocates who are working to accelerate access to clean cooking.

Renewable energy challenge

As part of the effort to build local capacity to support the growth of the clean cooking industry in the country, Dr Opoku Prempeh said Cabinet in 2019 approved the public-private-partnership project to locally produce and distribute 500,000 improved cookstoves jointly between the Ministry of Energy and the Climate Change Centre (CCC) of South Korea.

“This Carbon-for-Stove project is the largest clean cooking intervention in the ECOWAS region, and in line with the government’s commitment to distribute three million improved cookstoves by 2030,” he stated.

“The project will result in about one million tonnes of carbon dioxide savings per annum, reducing the supply of trees for charcoal production and contributing to the improvement of the overall carbon footprint of Ghana,” Dr Opoku Prempeh indicated.

Pollution eradication

The Chairperson of Ghana Alliance for Clean Cookstoves (GHACCO), Adwoa Etsiwaa Sey, said research had shown that around three out of four Ghanaians depended on polluting fuels such as charcoal, wood, and kerosene to cook their meals.

He said that way of cooking had led to thousands of premature deaths in Ghana each year, while also polluting the air and causing widespread forest degradation.

Ms Sey, therefore, said the country must think of clean cooking as an issue that cut across many other socio-economic concerns, and it required the attention of many different ministries, as well as investors and development partners, to enable the country to reach universal access.

Affordable energy

The wife of the Vice-President, Samira Bawumia, commended Clean Cooking Alliance for the effort to create awareness of solutions impacting the use of technologies for renewable energy and its influence on the sustainable development agenda.

She, however, expressed regret that in spite of the integral role cooking played in social integration, a great proportion of the world’s population had not yet adopted clean renewable energy in their domestic activities.

“In sub-Saharan Africa, the lack of access to clean cooking remains acute. It is the only region where the number of those without access continues to rise,” Mrs Bawumia said.

The share of those with access just increased from 15 per cent in 2015 to 17 per cent in 2020.

However, population growth pushed up the number of people without access by 10 per cent from 850 million to around 940 million in 2020, she asserted.

Mrs Bawumia indicated that if the trend continued, it could be estimated that in 2030 sub-Saharan Africa would have the greatest access deficit.

The forum also featured an Innovation Expo, showcasing the latest developments in clean cooking technologies and business models, including many from across Ghana.

Source: graphiconline


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