COOKING energy stakeholders have called on the need to increase commitment in the use of clean cooking solutions as top priority as it targets 75 per cent of households’ access of cooking energy services by 2030.
“We urge the government to prioritise policies and strategies which will ensure significant budget allocation to promote and create awareness for use of clean cooking solutions by households,” said Mr Estomih Sawe, the Chief Executive Officer of the Centre for Sustainable Energy Services (TaTEDO).
Mr Sawe said this in his opening remarks of a cooking energy stakeholders’ forum which was convened at the TaTEDO offices in Dar es Salaam recently.
He called for more emphasis to be laid on people using modern and simplified electrical cooking appliances like Electrical Pressure Cooker (EPC) which are affordable and time saving for areas with reliable electricity access.
“The government should consider waiving tax on clean cooking appliances like EPCs so that they can be affordable and hence make them accessible to end users,” he said.
Mr Sawe insisted that more efforts must be put in place as the country’s cooking energy market is still underdeveloped and dominated by wood fuel and charcoal which are burned in inefficient stoves and marketed in an informal sector.
He went on to highlight that even though more than 78 per cent of the population has access to electricity, it was only 3 per cent who uses electricity for cooking needs.
He added that to rectify the situation, interventions are needed through awareness creation and addressing cultural beliefs which delay transformation.
For his part, TaTEDO’s Manager for Electrification Department, Mr Shukuru Meena said that using modern electrical cooking appliances like EPC would relieve the country from environmental pollution.
“Over 450 hectors of trees are cleared in Tanzania in search of wood and charcoal cooking fuel which are not safe for users’ health and are basically expensive than using sustainable energy sources,” he said.
On unstable electricity, Mr Meena said that there was no need to worry as TaTEDO in collaboration with other partners are researching on rechargeable power hubs which may be used to complete the cooking process in case of power outages.
Representing the Commissioner of Electricity and Renewable Energies from the Ministry of Energy, MS Joyce Msangi assured the cooking energy stakeholders of support from the government.
Ms Msangi said that the government was ready to continue with the formulation of policies and amending the existing ones to ensure sustainability of the environment in meeting cooking energy and safety of users.