2013 Results Report Indicates Alliance and Its Partners Likely to Arrive at 100M Milestone Early

The Alliance’s 2013 annual report yields exciting news: the Alliance and its partners have made unprecedented progress over the past year, setting us on track to achieve our goal of fostering the adoption of clean cookstoves and fuels in 100 million households by 2020.

The Alliance’s annual results reporting process is designed to provide a better understanding of the annual activities of the Alliance and its partners, with a focus on global progress towards the adoption of cleaner, more efficient cooking technologies and fuels.  The 2013 Results Report: Sharing Partner Progress on the Path to Adoption of Clean Cooking Solutions, to be released on October 4, is the second in a series of annual Alliance reports illuminating traction and trends in the cookstove and fuel sector.
Information presented in this report is based on self-reported data collected from the Alliance’s diverse partnership base, including cookstove and fuel designers, manufacturers, distributors, testing organizations, researchers, local implementing partners, consultants, carbon project developers, multilateral institutions, investors, donors, and other organizations.  The majority of the data was collected through an online survey designed, administered, and analyzed by Forest Trends’ Ecosystem Marketplace, with technical and outreach support from the Alliance secretariat and its focus country market managers.

Results Reflect Global Momentum across the Clean Cooking Sector in 2013

Over half (456, ~51%) of the Alliance’s partners responded to the 2013 survey, a substantial increase over the 246 who reported in 2012 (Figure 1). 65% of all 2012 respondents, and 72% of manufacturers and distributers also reported in 2013.
Partners reported distributing 14.3 million stoves in 2013, a 75% increase over distribution levels reported in 2012 (8.2 million) and accounting for almost half of the 31.8 million stoves distributed since EPA’s Partnership for Clean Air (PCIA) started tracking progress in 2006 (Figure 2). Thus the Alliance and its partners are approximately one-third of the way toward its ultimate goal of securing clean cooking adoption in 100 million households by target year 2020.  From 2012 to 2013, the volume of stoves distributed grew at a rate between 18% and >100% across programs of all sizes (Figure 3), with partners reporting, on average, a 19% increase in stove distribution volumes over the previous year.
Participating partners in the survey reported activities in 81 countries.  At the same time, approximately two out of every three cookstoves (9.2 million) were distributed in the Alliance’s eight focus countries, namely Bangladesh, China, Ghana, Guatemala, India, Kenya, Nepal, Nigeria, and Uganda, where intensive efforts are underway to promote favorable environments for social investment and market scale (Figure 4).  Partners in China led the global sector in both manufacturing and distribution of cookstoves and fuels, with 7.8 million stoves manufactured in 2013, and the vast majority of these stoves were distributed in-country (Figure 5). Africa was the second most-active region for Alliance partners, and the primary target of finance for carbon offset projects promoting clean cooking technologies and techniques.
Alliance partners distributed a substantial proportion of stoves and fuels to end users, of which poor and low-income consumers in rural areas were the most commonly targeted user types, followed by users within higher income brackets in urban and peri-urban areas. Humanitarian programs accounted for approximately 3% of the 14.3 million clean cookstoves distributed, impacting at least 400,000 crisis-affected households in nine countries.  This is an almost fourfold increase over the 81,736 stoves distributed in humanitarian settings in 2012.
The sector’s growing emphasis on clean fuels development and distribution is increasingly reflected in the activities of Alliance partners, who last year distributed at least 11.6 million kilograms of clean fuel – 55% more than was reported in 2012, and over one-third of which was clean-burning liquid petroleum gas (LPG).  At the same time, we recognize that more work needs to be done in order to better capture the progress in the clean fuels market. 

Increased Regional Testing Capacity to Support Standards Process

Testing of cookstoves and fuels remains critical to ensure continuous improvement in performance and for public disclosure and transparency.  With 75% of all stove models reported as tested in 2013, the majority of partner organizations understand the need to evaluate stove and/or fuel performance. Indeed, testing not only improves organizational knowledge – it also educates the wider public about stove benefits and provides evidence to donors, investors, and consumers, keeping the market transparent and competitive.  However, less than half (48%) of manufacturing and distribution organizations reported that a third-party tested their stove. Third party testing in country should be facilitated by the noteworthy year-on-year increase in the number of testing organizations that were operating in every geographic region (Figure 6).
This year, for the first time, the survey integrated information from the Alliance’s Clean Cooking Catalog, a global database of cookstove and fuel performance information using key indicators such as stove features, specifications, emissions levels, efficiency, and safety from laboratory and field-testing.  While only 7% of reported stoves in this year’s report have been publicly submitted to the Catalog, the continued integration of additional stove performance data will enable better tracking of trends in the availability of cleaner and more efficient stoves and fuels over time.

Funding Sources Suggest Increasing Shift to Investment Funds

Both donors (private and public) and private investors play critical and mutually supportive roles in facilitating sector growth. Most often –but not always – private equity investments were reported by organizations engaged in stoves and fuels design, production, and distribution, while grant-based resources were targeted toward organizations working beyond the sector’s direct value chain to support research and evaluation, humanitarian goals, training, and other supporting actions.     

Government grants were the dominant source of funding, followed by private equity investment and carbon offset sales in 2013. While private equity investment made up a smaller proportion of the previous and current years’ financial support at the low, average and high end of award sizes, single private investments injected more capital into recipient businesses than did the typical donor award (Figure 8). In 2013-2015, the revenues from stove and fuels sales contributed or are expected to contribute approximately 10% of all funds flowing into the sector, a total of $14M, including $3M in in-kind payment. In 2013, the vast majority of this value was contributed by end users in the form of cash payments for stoves and fuels, while another 8% of purchases were financed by a variety of consumer finance vehicles including microloans, group lending, and employer assistance (Figure 9).            

As the sector matures, the proportion of private finance, including private equity, convertible debt, and commercial or private loans, is anticipated to match public funding sources (including sovereign government and development multilateral grants and loans) in the next few years (both making up approximately 42% of the sector’s finance mix).

For more detailed results, download the 2013 Results Report!

These findings are not meant to be comprehensive of the sector as a whole, but rather serve to illustrate the momentum of the Alliance’s partners and the sector in general. The full Results Report 2013 includes more detailed information than provided above, including results for each of the Alliance’s focus countries, a brief description of some of key interventions being undertaken to scale up clean cooking in these countries, and summaries of gender, humanitarian settings, and research results.

The Alliance is grateful to all partners who contributed data for this report.