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Principles for responsible carbon finance for clean cooking endorsed by MCFA

Principles for responsible carbon finance for clean cooking endorsed by MCFA
A broad coalition of stakeholders on clean cooking met in Paris, France on May 14, 2024, at the Summit on Clean Cooking in Africa, organized by the International Energy Agency (IEA) with the Executive Director Dr Fatih Birol (left), and co-chaired by the President of the United Republic of Tanzania H.E. Samia Suluhu Hassan; the Prime Minister of Norway H.E. Jonas Gahr Støre; and the President of the African Development Bank Group Dr Akinwumi A. Adesina (photo courtesy IEA).

At a high-level summit in Paris, France, on May 14, 2024, new principles for responsible carbon finance for clean cooking were announced to support the urgent scale-up of clean cooking initiatives in Africa and globally. In a statement, the Modern Cooking Facility for Africa (MCFA), a multi-donor facility established and managed by Nefco – the Nordic Green Bank – to support the development of new markets for the clean cooking sector and accelerate access to high-technology, modern, and affordable cooking equipment for consumers in Sub-Saharan Africa, says it endorses these principles.

Organized by the International Energy Agency (IEA), the one-day Summit on Clean Cooking in Africa brought together over 1,000 delegates, from governments, the private sector, development partners, international organizations, philanthropies, and civil society, all driven by the shared objective of making 2024 a pivotal year for achieving universal access to clean cooking.

Held on May 14, 2024, the Summit marked the largest-ever gathering exclusively focussed on clean cooking, drawing participation from 55 countries, represented by four Head of Government and 23 Ministers.

At the Summit, the significant efforts made to date were acknowledged, but it is evident that much more needs to be done.

A joint declaration, the Clean Cooking Declaration, signed by several countries, international organisations, civil society, and companies, was made in connection with the Summit on Clean Cooking in Africa, co-chaired by: H.E. Samia Suluhu Hassan, President of the United Republic of Tanzania, H.E. Jonas Gahr Støre, Prime Minister of Norway, Dr Akinwumi A. Adesina, President of the African Development Bank (AfDB), and Dr Fatih Birol, Executive Director of the International Energy Agency (IEA).

The Modern Cooking Facility for Africa (MCFA) endorses these new principles for responsible carbon finance, and as part of this commitment, Nefco, in its capacity as Fund Manager for MCFA, will:

  • Join a working group, convened by the International Energy Agency (IEA), with a pledge to mobilize public and private finance by supporting the generation of high-integrity carbon credits from clean cooking activities. This will be implemented through a concrete action plan with a commitment to engage in further dialogues to make progress on current challenges.
  • Endorse the development of the new clean cooking carbon project methodology, currently being developed by the Clean Cooking & Climate Consortium, led by the Clean Cooking Alliance (CCA), for all cooking projects under Article 6.2 and Article 6.4 of the Paris Agreement, as well as the Voluntary Carbon Market (VCM).
  • Commit to working towards a widespread application of digital monitoring, reporting, and verification (MRV) and the improvement of data collection and utilization from clean cooking activities.

Carbon finance has been an important source of funding for clean cooking companies in recent years, and it is expected that the adoption of the new principles will continue with the growth of voluntary markets, national carbon markets, and credit sales related to the Paris Agreement Article 6.

With modern energy technologies, fuel usage for cooking can be measured for all main fuel types, including electricity, ethanol, and biogas.

Methodologies now exist for certifying carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions for modern cooking appliances, which leverage usage data to improve and simplify emissions measurements and reporting requirements, allowing for a more efficient process for calculating emissions reductions and delivering cost savings, especially for monitoring, reporting, and verification (MRV).

MCFA recognizes that upfront costs represent a barrier to accessing carbon finance, which can be overcome through the provision of technical assistance to help clean cooking service providers access or set up their carbon credit programs.

Carbon finance is a key component of the Modern Cooking Facility for Africa. In connection to the Summit on Clean Cooking in Africa, Nefco hereby endorses the Principles for Responsible Carbon Finance for Clean Cooking to drive actions to improve the integrity of carbon credits, transparency of information, fairness in revenue sharing throughout the value chain, and long-term sustainability of local clean cooking markets, including enabling greater participation of clean cooking companies in carbon markets, stated Ash Sharma, Head of MCFA, and VP for Special Funds at Nefco.

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