Case study SCHARR

Sudan Improved Cookstoves Project

Reducing carbon and improving lives in Sudan

The challenges

Our award-winning cookstove project is the first registered carbon credit project in Sudan and the first to be developed in a conflict zone. It was developed by our UK project development team to improve household health by replacing traditional cooking methods – burning wood and charcoal inside the home – with improved LPG stoves.

The project is financed by the sale of carbon credits and we are delighted to be working with SCHARR who are now the main financers of Phase III of this improved cookstoves project which is having a very real and positive impact, not just on carbon emissions, but on improving the lives of people in Darfur.

26.1 million people in Sudan do not have access to clean cooking and are reliant on biomass for cooking fuel. High demand for firewood for cooking can lead to environmental degradation as supplies of dead wood are progressively exhausted and live trees cut down in an unsustainable manner.

Burning wood and charcoal releases large amounts of particulates, carbon monoxide and other pollutants. According to the World Health Organisation, prolonged exposure to biomass smoke is a major health risk, contributing to acute respiratory infections and other ailments in children. Each year 4.3 million people die globally from cooking-related indoor pollution caused illness – more than deaths from malaria, HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis combined.

Women and children are most vulnerable to this risk and also to the time commitments of cooking and collecting firewood, often to the detriment of their school attendance or their ability to work and gain additional income for their families.

In addition to this, Sudan is a country that is already affected by climate change. Drought and desertification are a reality. In Darfur, where there has been intense conflict for many years, there has been extensive damage to native tree cover leaving their natural resources and habitats depleted.

FRIEDRICH SCHARR KG, together with its subsidiaries supplies and distributes LPG, heating oil, natural gas, power, wood pellets and technical energy serivces in Germany. The company was founded in 1883 and is headquartered in Stuttgart. They offer full-service energy solutions for their customers, both private and commercial. Learn more:

Circle sky;

We not only “bring energy to life”, but also attach great importance to sustainability, resource protection and energy efficiency. It is common sense, that climate change is real and that carbon financing is one efficient way to do something about it. So we are pleased that this lighthouse project can be significantly developed by our contribution.

Rainer Scharr, Managing Partner of FRIEDRICH SCHARR KG

The solution

The Improved Cookstoves projects tackles all these issues by enabling families to purchase cleaner and more efficient LPG stoves through a local micro-finance initiative which is managed by women’s–led Development Association Network. LPG has lower greenhouse gas emissions than any other fossil fuel with 50% fewer carbon emissions than coal and 20% less than heating oil. The Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves states that cooking with efficient low smoke LPG reduces most key pollutants by over 95% and reduces energy consumption by 50-70%. The new cookstoves reduce overall household energy expenditure and cooking time by 40% for low-income families. The new stoves also mean that women and children spend less time buying fuel and communities are less reliant on the dwindling forest resources. Local women are employed to carry out surveys and make assessments of the social benefits delivered by the project to ensure that the positive impacts are being realising. We are really proud that the project has been awarded Lighthouse Status by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Momentum for Change Initiative, recognising the contribution to climate change adaptation and mitigation. The project is a clear example of the successful role business can play in efforts to reduce global carbon emissions and facilitate social change in developing countries.

The result

  • Almost 100% of families using the new cookstoves delivered by the project state that indoor air quality has greatly improved
  • Each stove installed in a household in Darfur saves 4.5 tCO2e – equivalent to one passenger flying 3 times between London and New York
  • Over 11,900 stoves have been installed in people’s homes (and with the help of companies like SCHARR, this continues to increase)
  • By the end of 2018, the project had saved 230,000 tCO2
  • Women are saving an average of 3 hours per day previously spent cooking with traditional fuels
  • 26% of women are starting new income generating activities, with a further 8% expanding existing activities with their increased time
  • 58% said they had more time to spend with their children
  • 48% of women surveyed said their husbands have even showed more interest in the cooking with the new stoves.
  • 16% of households say that eye and respiratory illness have been reduced following the switch to LPG
  • 100% of households have reported decreases in energy expenditure