September 12th, 2014 was a milestone for the cookstove sector in Myanmar.
One whole day dedicated to Improved Cookstoves (ICS) in Nayi Pyi Tau, under chairmanship of H.E.U Win Tun and Dr. Georges Duras from the EU Delegation.
Engaging on ICS is not only about these little hand-made pottery or metal devices. It is about all kitchens in the country, in each and every home; about women’s and children’s exposure to fumes in these kitchens when cooking with traditional cookstoves or open fires; about time and/or money spent every day to gather fuels, and following adverse effects on forest; about a whole informal and scattered sector of rural small and micro entrepreneurs, generating incomes through production and distribution of these cookstoves.
Addressing all these issues, GERES and EGG teams presented on this September 12th their SWITCH-Asia funded project, to scale up the dissemination of ICS in Myanmar.
Project’s strategy is based on proven best practices in the Region, to strengthen and improve the cookstove sector and distribute ICS at scale through commercialization. This will contribute to Myanmar’s development agenda, European Union’s agenda to support inclusive green growth, and UN foundation’s Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves (GACC) to reach its goal of seeing 1 billion ICS globally adopted by 2020.
GERES has successfully deployed a similar approach in Cambodia. From a very segmented sector, distributing only traditional stoves, more than 250 ICS producers and distributors have been trained and equipped, and a branch association (ICoProDAC, also a partner of the SWITCH-Asia funded project in Myanmar) is being empowered, taking care of quality control, standard development, labeling of ICS, and access to finance for its members. In 10 years, 3 million ICS have been served to Cambodian homes.
Taking stock of these lessons learnt, GERES teams up with EGG, active in the Burmese ICS sector for decades, ICoProDAC, and ETC-Energia, a program specialized in gender and energy, to address Myanmar’s specificities and to boost the local ICS market.
First step is to study the stoves people currently use to cook, boil water and heat their homes. The aim is to gather the stakeholders and to bring a better technology matching the end-users' needs. Following steps will consist of coaching producers, improving the research and development effort in the country through the Forest Research Institute (FRI), developing standards, educating the market and raising end user’s and policy makers’ awareness. The whole process will last 4 years and will reach at least four provinces in the country.
Once the project overview portrayed by the speakers, attendees raised interesting questions to better understand better the project rationale, and brought up additional inputs which allowed further shaping the methodology.
Finally, the project raised attention and interest of the
audience. Government members and partners ignited the momentum, and
all were pleased to call the workshop successful.
This project is funded by the European Union, by the FFEM, the Fondation RAJA and the Fondation Lord Michelham of Hellingly