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Lynne Featherstone speech on clean cookstoves

May 6, 2014 9:15 AM
Originally published by UK Liberal Democrats

Lynne Featherstone spoke this morning at a Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves (GACC) conference at the Royal Society.

GACC was launched in 2010 with the goal of increasing access to clean and efficient cook stoves and fuels, reaching approximately 500 million people across the world by 2020. In November 2013, Lynne joined the GACC's Leadership Council to help bring forward political action to the clean cooking issue, within the context of Lynne's campaign on Clean Energy Access for Girls and Women.


At the conference, Lynne said:

"Without action to support clean and efficient cooking, the aspirations of economic empowerment and the entitlement to safety and health, cannot be met for girls and women across the world…

"If girls and women are collecting firewood, they are not learning or earning, and so can't meet their own potential or their families'. We also know that as women gather firewood, they can be at risk of attack. Most shockingly, and the clearest signal of the need for decisive action, is the new World Health Organisation estimate that over 4 million deaths in 2012 were attributable to Household Air Pollution…

"4.3 million is a very large number, and combined with the 2.6 billion people still relying on firewood, charcoal and coal for their cooking every day - we are talking about a public health crisis that is part of daily life across the developing world. It's a sobering thought; millions of people are dying from pollution in their own kitchens, in the heart of their own homes..."

"Transparent performance standards and testing facilities for cookstoves are essential. I will commit the UK today to follow up on the cookstove standards work which the Alliance is convening with UK help. We need to establish a minimum threshold for the stoves we support, to make sure they are effective, safe and sufficiently reduce smoke.

What counts after all, is that these stoves make a real difference. Families need to see a new stove is worth their investment, not only saving them money and time but also improving their health."