Irene Batebe, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry revealed that a total investment of about US$20M which will come from both the public and private sector has been earmarked for this fund to enable the public to access upfront capital for clean cooking solutions.
The Ministry of Energy under the Electricity Scale-up Project financed
by the World Bank will provide 72 billion Shillings to finance clean cooking solutions targeting
353,000 households, of about 1.66 million people across the country.
Pauline Irene Batebe, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry says that a
total investment of about US$20M which will come from both the public and private
sector has been set aside for this fund to enable the public to access upfront
capital for clean cooking solutions.
Batebe explains that the fund will also offer working capital to clean
cooking service providers, who include manufacturers and distributors of clean
cooking solutions; a grant facility in form of technical assistance to clean
cooking service providers.
This will cover training technology, business development support,
marketing support and awareness creation; and a subsidy scheme to buy down the
upfront cost of clean cooking
Agnes Naluwagga, the Head of Bio-energy at the
Centre for Research in Energy and Energy Conservation said modern energy
cooking services are aimed at transiting households from solid biomass fuels.
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Dr. David Bilimumaso, a resident of Kampala says
his family has already adopted the technology, and that his experience in using
an Electric Pressure Cooker – EPC has notably helped him to save on time and
cost compared to charcoal.
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But Carolyn Aguti, from Soroti observed that the
EPC technology may be a barrier to cultural practices and traditional food cooking
styles like mingling millet, and roasting of meat.
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Patrick Tutembe, an official from the
Electricity Regulatory Authority – ERA observed that the technology is
affordable and that manufacturers only need comprehensive advocacy to
enable the population embrace it.
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The Uganda Revenue Authority - URA has provided incentives for clean
cooking of 0% duty remission on inputs used in the manufacture of energy-saving stoves; tax exemption for plastic bag biogas digesters, and excise duty for
denatured ethanol for cooking; and waived VAT for ethanol produced from cassava.
In December, 2021 Government introduced a cooking tariff to make the
cost of cooking with electricity lower in homes. The new cooking tariff enables
a consumer to pay 412 Shillings for each unit of electricity in the threshold approved by the Electricity Regulatory
Authority - REA
The Ministry said it is working very closely with the Uganda National
Bureau of Standards – UNBS to develop standards for Electric Pressure Cookers -
EPCs, and establish a certification program for manufacturers, distributors as well as electricians involved in the repair and maintenance.
On Wednesday this week, the Ministry backed by Modern
Energy Services – MECs, and the Centre for Research in Energy and Energy
Conservation - CREEC, launched Uganda eCooBook, to promote energy-efficient
The guide provides insight into the
role that energy-efficient cooking devices can play in Uganda’s energy future,
with a specific focus on the Electric Pressure Cookers – EPCs. the
eCookBook illustrates how energy relates to money and time to enable household
to understand how to save by using smarter cooking techniques.
Uganda’s energy sector is characterized by the
heavy reliance on solid biomass fuels in the form of firewood and charcoal –
which contributes over 89% of total consumable energy in the country.
Dr. Gerard Banaga, the Assistant Commissioner in
charge of Technical Planning in the Ministry of Energy pointed out that nearly
100,000 - 200,000 hectares of forestland are being destroyed per
annum, setting dangerous precedence of environmental destruction.
Firewood and charcoal are the key cooking energy sources in
urban centers and developing towns, and are responsible for more than 18,000
deaths globally per annum due to emissions, especially with the traditional
In Uganda, charcoal demand is increasing in tandem
with the population and urbanization rate and is now standing at about 1.8
million tons per annum, which is an average of 18 million tons of fresh wood.
Ochola's journalism career begun from Radio King 90.2 FM in Gulu around 2009, and Radio Rupiny 95.7 Fm under Vision Group in 2012. He also reported for Mighty Fire 91.5 Fm, Kitgum in 2015 before joining Wizarts Foundation in 2017.
He has been reporting for Uganda Radio Network (URN) since 2017 before being posted as Bureau Chief Kitgum, and latr Gulu between 2018 - 2021. Currently, he reports from Parliament.