Prosper K. Kuorsoh, GNA
Wa, Sept. 10, GNA – The Netherlands Development Organisation (SNV) has called for a national policy framework specifically for improved cook stoves to help address the challenge of household air pollution.
Statistics by the World Health Organisation (WHO) indicates that globally, 4.3 million people die annually on the average as a result of household air pollution.
In Ghana, a total of 13,700 people die annually out of indoor household air pollution; the third leading cause of disease burden globally.
Mr Dramani Bukari, the Senior Renewable Energy Advisor at SNV, made the call during a two-day SNV Voice for Change (V4C) media training workshop for selected media practitioners across the Upper West, Upper East and Northern regions.
He disclosed that currently, Ghana had no draft policy for improved cook stoves, noting however that there was a bio-energy draft policy, which mentioned a number of activities on improved cook stoves but did not provide clear target and a coordinating framework for it.
Mr Bukari said the policy framework would clearly state government’s overall plan for the sector and map out specific activities to be taken to accelerate the availability and adaptation of the cook stoves.
He indicated that the policy would include financing mechanism for the sector as well as training and other related implementation plans.
It appeared over the years government had placed so much emphasis on Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG), he said and that it was difficult to sustain because of the financial burden on the people.
“Majority of the people will not be able to transition from the indigenous tri-pot cooking method straight to adopt LPG because of the financial burden associated with LPG,” he said.
Women use about 30 minutes daily and about 170 hours a year searching for firewood, he said, adding that if they were able to adopt improved cook stoves they would not only reduce the lost time but also reduce the number of people who die annually out of household air pollution.
Mr Bukari said to make improved cook stoves even cheaper for easy adoption, the Government through the metropolitan, municipal and district assemblies should consider removing taxes and tolls on the product in addition to mainstreaming it into their medium term development plans and budgeting process.
He said the promotion and adoption of improved cook stoves was an area Ghana could gain donor funding because of its climate mitigating impact.
While emphasising on the need to provide training for improved cook stove manufacturers in the country, Mr Bukari also appealed to the media to help promote its use.