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Clean Energy for Household Cooking in Ghana

EnterpriseWorks/VITA has been active in the domestic energy subsector since the mid-1980s, when it provided financial and technical assistance to the highly successful USAID-funded Kenya Ceramic-Lined Stove Project.  This has been the model for other household energy initiatives throughout Africa and Asia, including EWV’s current Household Energy Program in Ghana.  Since 2002, with USAID and Shell Foundation funding, EWV’s Clean Energy for Household Cooking project in Ghana has focused on the manufacture and commercialization of consumer-oriented designed stoves that reduce indoor air pollution, use less fuel, last longer, and are safer than traditional stoves. 

Improved, high-efficiency cookstoves that burn less charcoal and other biomass provide tremendous socioeconomic, environmental, and health benefits to stove users and their communities.  EWV’s improved stoves in Ghana, marketed under the brand name Gyapa, are incredibly fuel-efficient, helping families save on energy costs by enabling them to reduce their fuel consumption by up to 40 percent.  Use of these improved stoves has also helped slow the rate of deforestation by reducing the consumption of charcoal and wood.  This is especially important in Ghana, where the per capita consumption of charcoal is the highest in West Africa and the environment is under increasing pressure as its forest reserves are becoming ever more threatened.  Furthermore, EWV’s improved stoves significantly lessen cooking smoke, substantially reducing harmful indoor air pollution that has been proven to increase illness and sometimes lead to premature deaths. Last but not least, EWV’s stove program in Ghana has increased employment throughout the stoves value chain, creating jobs for metal workers, ceramists, and retailers.

Since stove manufacture and distribution began, EWV Ghana has sold over 150,000 stoves and has mentored manufacturers, distributor and retailers that are currently operating on a self-sustaining basis.  Additionally, households have saved an average of $37 per year with a total annual savings of $3.6 million. The improved stoves have reduced indoor air pollution and over the stoves’ 3-year lifespan have conserved the equivalent of more than 27,606 hectares of forest.

To read Shell Foundation's information sheet about EWV's stoves project in Ghana click here

To read more about the EWV-trained potters, manufacturers and retailers that make up the Gyapa stove supply chain click here