Environmental and Rural Mediation Centre (ENVIRUMEDIC) is the Partner of the Month of February! In this interview, the Managing Director, Monday Itoghor shares their activities in the clean cookstoves sector.
Give us a brief introduction about your organization
Environmental and Rural Mediation Centre (ENVIRUMEDIC) is a Non-Governmental and Not-for-Profit making organization. It was founded in the year 2000 following a poverty Index survey carried out in the Niger Delta Region. It is geared toward poverty eradication and safe guarding the environment in a sustainable manner. ENVIRUMEDIC works in 13 communities across 3 Local Government Areas of Delta State using the Child Sponsorship Mechanism Modelling with support from ActionAid. Our vision is to create a future where poverty is eradicated and people are living a life of dignity; with a mission to work with the grassroots to promote holistic development programme and improve sexual and reproductive health and rights.
What does your organization seek to achieve in the Nigeria’s cooking energy market
Manufacture and distribute domestic and institutional clean cookstoves that can be used both indoors and outdoors in rural and urban areas. The clean cookstoves provide immediate environmental, economic, social and health benefits while protecting the eco system. Production and sale of the clean cookstoves also contribute to creating jobs, encouraging apprenticeship and promoting entrepreneurship opportunities as well as capacity building.
Can you tell us about your clean cookstoves and clean cooking activities including your achievements?
Our clean cookstoves is called Ecostove. It is made of clay burner and metallic structures that use biomass and briquettes. The project is designed to address the issue of adaptation to climate change through the use of Eco-Stove for energy efficiency. We also conduct trainings and empower local peer educator groups on protecting our environment, sustained forest management and increased forest foods as well as ensure additional income is raised among beneficiaries.
How are consumers reacting to your products/clean cooking activities – benefits of your cookstoves/clean cooking activities to the consumers?
Feedback from the consumers has been very positive. Key among them is that our cookstoves and fuel are cost effective and are easily available. It is easy to carry about and improves their health when compared to traditional cookstoves.
How does your clean cooking activity help drive employment generation and the empowerment of women?
In the course of implementing the UNDP/Eco-Bank sponsored Eco-Stove production 300 women in Emonu Orogun were gainfully employed for six month on the production and it is now their means of livelihood.
If you are asked to advise the Federal Government of Nigeria on policy options, what are the three most important things the government can do to expand the clean cookstoves market?
The three most important things the federal government can do to expand the clean cookstoves market are: the provision of financial assistance to producers, distributors and consumers; develop and implement standards for clean cookstoves; and promote domestic production of clean cookstoves.
If an enabling environment is not created by government, what future risks do you envisage?
If an enabling environment is not created by the government, all Nigerians will revert to the traditional way of cooking thereby emitting more carbon monoxide and other GHGs. This will further have negative impact on the health of our women who does most of the cooking.
What are your suggestions for moving the cooking energy market forward in Nigeria?
To move the clean cooking energy market forward in Nigeria, the government should intensify efforts to make funds available for young SMEs, support trainings, provide good legislation, and enabling environment for the production and marketing of clean cookstove.
Is there any other thing you would like to share?
Clean cookstoves is not only important in terms of employment generation and income earnings, it is desirable as it increases the life span of women, emitting little or no smoke when compared to the conventional open fire.