The Ghana Alliance for Clean Cook stoves (GHACCO) is set to produce five million improved cook stoves to lessen environmental and health hazards associated with the use of traditional cooking stoves or fire woods.
The cookstoves will reach four million households by 2020.
Speaking on the sidelines of a training to boost efficiency of cookstove industry players on Wednesday, Mrs Faustina Boakye, Chairperson of GHACCO told the GNA that production of improved cookstoves would minimise high levels of indoor air pollution originating from fumes and smoke discharged from solid fuels on open air.
The training forms part of the Alliance’s commitment to boost the efficiency of members to increase production and reach out to greater number of Ghanaians especially those living in the rural areas.
Mrs Faustina Boakye noted that the use of traditional stoves, coal pots or fire woods affected the people badly, particularly, women, causing many to lose their eye sights.
A cook in Opoku Ware Senior High School in Kumasi was reported to have gone blind due to perpetual encounter with open fire, she said.
Ghana’s reliance on wood fuel has become a serious threat to the ecosystem, threatening food and water security for the human pollution as deforestation increases land erosion and worsening drought and flooding.
Members of GHACCO produce approximately 200,000 improve cookstoves to address the challenge, but Mrs Boakye said that the number fell far below the national capacity, expressing the hope of scaling it up to 500,000.
Dr Bernard Otabil, General Manager of GNA, who chaired the training session, was optimistic that given the right resource and capacity building, the Alliance could hit the target set to enable many Ghanaians access improved cookstoves.
He, however, said government and civil society ought to engage in aggressive education, highlighting the dangers traditional cooking methods posed to the health of people, particularly women, and the environment.
“We cannot allow our environment to be degraded and bastardised the way it is being done…we have to adopt clean ways of cooking, the future should be a burden for all of us,” he said.
Pamela Roussos, Senior Director, Global Social Benefit Institute of Centre for Science, Technology, and Society, said the training would help the producers to articulate quickly and clearly their business plans to woo investors.
She said this is the fourth session for industry players following similar training in Kenya, Bangladesh and California, to assist those in the value chain build sustainable business. GNA