New skills and employment for local communities in Rwanda

As the first stoves to be distributed in Rwanda reach their new homes, co2balance has been providing the opportunity for local community members to learn new skills and get involved with the implementation of our project. Yesterday, 5 members of the Ngeruka Sector took part in a training day with our local NGO partner, to learn about the use and benefits of the efficient stoves, fuel management, and the quantitative measurement of wood fuel to determine the real savings that the new co2balance stoves can make! These skills will not only lead to much needed employment in the area, but will also be passed on to whole communities through a structured education programme.

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DECC launches another consultation on the CRC Scheme. What does this mean for your business?

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The Department of Energy and Climate Change has launched another consultation on the CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme to encourage the uptake of on-site renewable energy. The consultation also hopes to exclude metallurgical and mineralogical processes from the scheme.

DECC will also be amending the CRC Order 2013 to simplify the wording to avoid double counting of energy supplies under the CRC, CCAs and the EU ETS when there is a landlord and tenant relationship.

Important dates for Phase 1 of the Scheme

  • The compliance payment period is from 1st September to 20th September 2014.
  • The rate is £12 per tCO2 on actual emissions reported in the 2013/14 Annual Report.
  • Annual reporting period: 3 June 2014 to 31 July 2014
  • Allowance ordering period: 3 June 2014 to 31 July 2014
  • Payment period: 2 September 2014 to 20 September 2014
  • Allocation period: 2 September 2014 to 15 October 2014
  • Surrender deadline: 31 October 2014

Phase 2 of the scheme runs from the 1 April 2014 to 31 March 2019. The forecast payment period is from 1st June to 20th June 2014. The forecast rate is£15.60 per tCO2 and payment is based on a forecast of annual emissions. If a company opts out of purchasing forecasted credits, the compliance payment period is from 1st September to 19th September 2015 and payment will be £16.40 per tCO2, based on actual emissions

To find out more on how co2balance could help your organisation comply with the CRC Scheme please contact us here

New Borehole Projects in Sierra Leone

Co2balance is launching new Gold Standard Micro-Scale Borehole Projects in Sierra Leone with the first boreholes being rehabilitated in Bombali District in the northern part of the country. Co2balance has arranged a meeting with local stakeholders in which we seek their opinion on the project’s design and social and environmental impacts; we believe this is an essential step in implementing a project in which the local community has ownership – thereby maximising the chances of successful adoption. The meeting will be held on the 22nd February in Kamakwie and we are hoping to welcome all major stakeholders from the Sierra Leonean energy and WASH sector as well as future borehole users from the local communities.

Kamabayoi Borehole pump

 

Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves Conference

Part of the co2balance team spent today attending the National Clean Cookstoves and Fuel Conference in Nairobi, Kenya hosted by the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves. The Alliance’s goal is to catalyze the adoption of clean and efficient cookstoves and fuels by households through a market-based approach that will achieve the following objectives:

  • Reduce household air pollution
  • Reduce environmental degradation
  • Empower women and improve livelihoods

20140204_161045[1]The meeting kicked off with presentations from the US Ambassador to Kenya, Robert Godec as well as representatives from the United Nations and the Kenyan Government. These were proceeded by informative talks ranging from the recent Customer Segmentation Study conducted by co2balance  to clean cookstove standards, distribution models and financing options.

It is safe to say that after a full day of talks all the delegates, including co2balance, left with a lot to think about and a renewed sense of purpose to achieve the target of 7 million households in Kenya using improved cookstoves by 2020.

Left to Right:
Charles Ruto, Moses Maina
and Lloyd Archer

Introducing Moses Maina, Project Development Coordinator

For those of you who have been following our blog you will be aware that we have been recruiting for a new role within the company, to be based in Nairobi, Kenya. After some tough decisions we have made our choice and it gives me great pleasure to introduce Moses Maina to you as our new Project Development Coordinator.

Moses is currently pursuing a Masters degree in Development Studies having already obtained a Post Graduate Diploma in Project Management and a Bachelor’s Degree in Environmental Studies (Community Development) from Kenyatta University. For the last 3 years he has worked for the Centre of Governance and Human Rights (CGHR) based at Cambridge University as a Research Consultant. Prior to that Moses had worked for the German International Cooperation (GIZ) where he supported development of a renewable energy project promoting Akut biogas technology and energy saving stoves as a project supervisor. In his spare time Moses works as a Volunteer Project Assistant with the Nairobi Disabled Empowerment Programme, helping to raise funds and coordinate their activities.

His passion for sustainable environmental conservation & management developed about five years ago when he saw weather conditions becoming very unpredictable and changing for the worst, farm produce dwindling every season due unreliable rainfall patterns, drought affecting areas that were known to be wet almost the whole year round, rising atmospheric temperatures and many more – all these as a result of the global menace; climate change. Knowing well that most of these have been caused as a result of anthropogenic activities, Moses is very much determined to be part of the process that seeks to reduce greenhouse gases from the atmosphere thus save the world for both the current and coming generations.

Moses Maina Joins the TeamMoses: “I am very much pleased to officially join the co2balance team as the Project Development Coordinator in Kenya. I am hopeful that I will effectively work together with the rest of the team and thus bring positive change to the company and the world.”

Left to Right: Catherine Ruhiu ‘HR and Finance Coordinator’; Moses Maina ‘Project Development Coordinator’ and Charles Ruto ‘Construction, Maintenance & Logistics Manager’

I hope you will all join us in welcoming Moses to the team!

Plans progressing in West Kisumu

co2balance’s improved cook stove project in West Kisumu, Kenya has recently seen exciting progress as plans to introduce the new artisanal stove start to move forward! The locally produced stove will soon be available to purchase at a highly subsidised cost thanks to carbon finance. With a workshop space secured, we look forward to our local artisans beginning construction in the coming weeks!

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Case study from Cameroon

In the previous post on Cameroon we wrote about the successful stakeholder meeting and the promising partnership co2balance launched with a local NGO, ACREST on improved cookstoves. ACREST has been successfully producing and selling the stoves in the past years and now thanks to co2balance subsidy channelled through the carbon market, the stoves are available to the wider community, serving families who previously could not afford buying it. Today we would like to present a case study of one of the existing ACREST cookstove users interviewed during our field trip in Cameroon.

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Madame Lontsie Ernestine has been using the improved stove for four years to cook for sometimes as many as 14 people in her extended family.

During the interview she explained that she liked the stove primarily because it consumed much less wood than the traditional stoves. She compared the amount of wood she used to burn to cook on the three stone fire to the amount she needed on the ACREST stove – today she needs only 3 pieces of wood instead of 15 pieces to cook the same meal (see pictures below).

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She also explained that since cooking on ACREST stove her health condition has improved thanks to the reduced in-house smoke. Just as other women in the area, she has been cooking inside the house and mainly in the evenings which has had very serious effect on her sight. The exposure to smoke from three-stone fire had caused eye irritation to an extent that her eyes were bloodshot and painful on a regular basis. She welcomed the partnership and the lower price for the improved cookstoves as she hopes that this way more women in the area will have access to better cooking conditions in their kitchen.

Co2balance is looking forward to supporting growing number of local families through the carbon market and in partnership with ACREST and hopefully we could soon report on similar success stories from West-Cameroon.

First Rwandan stoves arrive safely in the Project Area!

The first batch of stoves for our Rwanda project have now left the factory in Kigali and have safely arrived in our Project Area in the Bugesera District. Our Construction, Maintenance & Logistics Manager worked alongside the local team at the factory to ensure that all the stoves were completed to a high standard, and quality checked as they were loaded onto the truck ready for delivery.

ImageThe stoves then travelled from Kigali to Bugesera where they were met by our local NGO partner, and stored close to their final destination with the families in the Ngeruka Sector. The next couple of weeks will see the distribution of all of these stoves to the houses of the first families!

ISO 14001 Environmental Management Systems – How could we help?

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co2balance has been awarded it’s re accreditation certificate from the United Kingdom Accreditation Council, substantiating that its Environmental Management System delivers best practice standards and fulfills legislative requirements.

The BS EN ISO 14001:2004 is an internationally accepted standard outlining how businesses should put an effective environmental management system in place. Its purpose is to help businesses remain commercially successful without forgetting their environmental responsibilities.

In addition to be ISO 14001 accredited, co2balance also offers a consultancy services to help organisations develop and implement their own Environmental Management Systems. There are numerous benefits to certification;

• Certification demonstrates that an effective and ongoing Environmental System is in place.
• Significant advantage over competitors when tendering for business.
• Reduced environmental liability.
• Cost savings from Electricity, Utilities, Consumables, and Waste Disposal
• Improve corporate image among regulators, customers and the public.
• Existing personnel know they are working in an environmentally responsible organisation.
• Improves competitiveness when dealing with Local Authorities, Multinationals, and the like.
• Provides a framework for working within Industry Regulations and Legal Responsibilities.

If you would like to find out how we could help your organisation in implementing its own Environmental Management System, please contact us here

His Excellency welcomes co2balance Project

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Suzanne and Ellie from co2balance, along with our Climate Corporation partner, have recently had the pleasure to meet the High Commissioner of the Republic of Rwanda to the UK. At a recent meeting in London, co2balance shared their experiences in Rwanda and the details of our latest project, and received a great response! As implementation is set to begin in Rwanda, we continue to build our relationships here in the UK to ensure the best project possible for the communities. Check back soon as we follow the progress of the first stoves heading to their households. . .