The Cleaner Cooking Coalition (CCC) was set up to tackle the climate challenge through the promotion of fuel-efficient technologies that meet the specific needs of the people. In some of the poorest areas of the world, almost everybody cooks with firewood. Although wood is a renewable resource, if more wood is burnt than is re-grown, more CO2 ends up in the atmosphere – which is bad for our climate. Also, not only does this result in greater scarcity of wood, but also increases soil erosion, river siltation, the sinking of the water table and reduced natural habitat for biodiversity. Likewise, this has health implications, such as lower respiratory tract infections, often exacerbated or caused by indoor air pollution.
The organisation is made up of a diverse group of people including social entrepreneurs, researchers, policy makers and advocates that are primarily concerned with meeting the cooking needs of poor households and communities with better, cleaner and sustainable energy.
The science and demographics are clear, even with urbanization, for at least another decade at least 2 billion people will continue to rely on biomass fuel.
The CCC aims for cleaner cooking energy for all by promoting user-centric, biomass and other renewable energy fuelled cooking options globally.
Their long-term vision is sustainable and carbon-neutral cooking for all by 2050, which includes a broad spectrum of fuels and technologies. These initiatives do not involve daily consumption of fossil fuel in any form and social innovation whereby the needs and preferences of the most vulnerable users are prioritised in the design, development and deployment of interventions and solutions.
In 2021 the CCC’s focus was on Malawi, mainly due to the possibility to scale up the work they do there and also so that Malawi can be a voice for those that will continue to rely on wood for their household energy needs.
Malawi is a small Southern African country where 85% of its 18 million people live in rural areas and mostly cook with firewood on open fires for their everyday cooking energy needs. In recent years, with increased pressure on its natural resources, the country has been focusing on making cleaner cooking stoves more accessible for everyone.
In October 2020, the country reached its own ambitious target of 2 million cleaner cookstoves by 2020, meaning that the National Programme had reached almost half the population, including ultra-poor and labour constrained households. This incredible feat was the result of a prior TIE project, when Trevor Gilley from Wieden + Kennedy New York headed to Malawi to create a campaign that made fuel-efficient stoves look attractive. Trevor Gilley’s campaign was a huge success. At launch, more than 10,000 fuel-sufficient stoves were ordered – a number 1900% higher than pre-campaign. In Conor Fox’s (one of CCC’s co-founders) own words, the 2 million stoves mark was in no small part due to Trevor and TIE.
Since this admirable achievement, Malawi was nominated and subsequently selected by the UN Energy and Sustainable Energy for All (SE4All), as a Global Champion for energy access at the High-Level Dialogue for Energy hosted by the UN in New York in September 2021 (#HLDE2021). Malawi was the only Global Champion from Least Developed Countries at the meeting and represented the estimated 2.8 billion people that rely on solid fuels, such as firewood and charcoal, to meet their daily cooking energy needs.
In order to help the government of Malawi to position their message at the high profile UN energy meeting, TIE Accelerator pulled together a team of professionals from Switzerland, England, and Australia. The result was a beautifully positioned message and film that the President of Malawi delivered. The team also created a cleaner cooking pledge which was later signed by the First Minister of Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon, and Hon Nancy Tembo, Minister of Forestry and Natural Resources of Malawi, as a commitment to cleaner cooking opportunities and to the people who depend on it. Following this, CCC was able to secure a $50,000 donation to continue their important work.
You can watch the speech written by the TIE team below: