Sparking Change from the Kitchen: The CookFund Programme's Drive for Sustainable Cooking in Tanzania
08 August 2023
Clean cooking solutions serve a pivotal role in mitigating climate change impacts, forest degradation prevention, and reducing health issues related to traditional cooking methods. Over time, these solutions also aid in cutting down household expenditure on recurring purchases of charcoal or wood.
In light of this concerted effort, the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF), the European Union, and the United Republic of Tanzania's government jointly launched the "CookFund Programme". The programme's goal is to curb the reliance on charcoal and wood fuel in Tanzania's urban regions.
Funded by the European Union (EU), the programme targets the regions of Pwani, Morogoro, Dar es Salaam, Mwanza, and Dodoma. The EU's financial contribution is part of the broader 'Integrated Approach to Sustainable Clean Cooking Solutions Programme in Tanzania' and the 11th European Development Fund (EDF). The programme serves as a vehicle to enhance the proportion of urban populations utilizing sustainable clean cooking energy solutions, promoting women's economic empowerment, and bolstering local economic development.
During the CookFund exhibition at the European Union grounds, H.E Ambassador Manfredo Fanti, Head of the European Union Delegation in Tanzania, highlighted the national government's policy to adapt to and mitigate climate change's effects. He stated that supporting these government policies in the areas of climate change and environment is a priority for the European Union. A significant part of this commitment is to prevent deforestation and unsustainable use of natural resources.
Ambassador Fanti emphasized the clean cooking programme's objectives, which include promoting more sustainable cooking, increasing the market availability of clean cooking technologies, and informing the public that clean cooking solutions are not necessarily more costly than traditional charcoal. He stressed the public health considerations, especially since charcoal burning in enclosed spaces poses significant health risks to women and children.
Fanti also underscored the change in the EU's cooperation approach, emphasizing their interest in team-based work with the European member states, of which 11 are in Tanzania. Regardless of their financial contributions, all of these states strongly align with the European political agenda, particularly concerning climate change. This unity provides an opportunity to share messages about green deals and reducing greenhouse gas emission consequences, presenting a united European front. He concluded his remarks by reiterating their commitment to aiding Tanzanians in enhancing their quality of life and improving their environmental conditions.