Clean cooking push suffering from poor funding in Africa, others

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International organisations said on Monday that funding to boost the numbers of people with access to electric power and clean cooking is too low to meet the global goal for everyone to have modern, reliable and affordable energy by 2030, Reuters reports.

Just over 3 billion people still use traditional, solid fuels like firewood and dung to cook, the latest data shows. Lack of finance to end the use of polluting cooking fuels for cooking is “shocking”, said Rachel Kyte, CEO of Sustainable Energy for All (SEforALL), a body set up by the last U.N. chief.

Close to 90 percent of Bangladeshis lack access to clean cooking, with many relying on poorly vented clay stoves, while more than 70 percent of Nigerians use wood as their main cooking fuel, stoking deforestation, said a report by SEforALL produced with the World Bank, Climate Policy Initiative and the African Development Bank, among others.

Across the 20 countries with the biggest gaps in access, international and domestic investment in residential clean cooking averaged just $32 million a year in 2013-14, compared to an estimated annual need of at least $4.4 billion globally.

Not enough governments – especially in sub-Saharan Africa – treat clean cooking as a priority, she said. And the focus has been on designing more efficient stoves at the expense of providing cleaner fuels, such as gas and solar induction.