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World Bank Group: The Hidden Side of Energy Access: Understanding Clean Cooking (Virtual Knowledge Exchange)

This course is based on the World Bank’s “ The Hidden Side of Energy Access: Understanding Clean Cooking ”. This course explores the hidden side of energy access by uncovering the reality that over 4 billion people around the world currently lack access to modern energy cooking services (MECS) for their daily cooking needs. Throughout the developing world, households still cook with firewood and charcoal on rudimentary stoves in poorly ventilated rooms, resulting in significant negative impacts for health, gender, the environment, and our climate.

The Hidden Side of Energy Access: Understanding Clean Cooking (Virtual Knowledge Exchange)
4 weeks
2–3 hours per week
Progress at your own speed
Optional upgrade available

About this course

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Access to clean cooking solutions, including modern stoves and cooking fuels, is often overlooked as part of the wider energy access agenda. This is surprising, given that four billion people – over half the world’s population – lack access to modern energy cooking service, also known as MECS, for their daily cooking practices. This means that families around the world continue to rely on fuels like wood or charcoal and rudimentary stoves, leading to devastating health, climate, environmental and gender impacts that cost the world an estimated 2.4 trillion dollars each year.

While the imperatives are clear, attention and focus on clean cooking have not been commensurate. To address this gap, the World Bank’s Open Learning Campus (OLC) and the Energy Sector Management Assistance Program (ESMAP) are partnering in a virtual Knowledge Exchange (KE) that builds on the recently launched, first-of-its-kind self-paced e-learning course titled The Hidden Side of Energy Access: Understanding Clean Cooking. The KE is a month-long interactive workshop series that will feature speaker presentations from various clean cooking innovators and practitioners, discussion forums, and self-paced exercises across the four modules of the e-learning.

At a glance

  • Language: English
  • Video Transcript: English
  • Associated skills: Management, Cooking, Presentations

What you'll learn

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The core objective of this course is to improve awareness and bring renewed attention to the state of access to modern energy cooking services, while also drawing attention to the first comprehensive course on clean cooking. This is the first step to address critical sustainable development challenges and opportunities related to energy, health, the environment, the climate, and gender equality.

Week 1: Making the Case for Modern Energy Cooking Services (MECS)

Ensuring universal access to affordable, reliable, and modern energy cooking services (MECS) is a critical development objective from a health, environment, climate, and gender equality perspective. This session will make the case for clean cooking and introduce you to the concept of MECS and the Multi-Tier Framework.

Week 2: The Entrepreneurial Journey

There are several key demand- and supply-side barriers that stand in the way of greater progress on the clean cooking agenda. This session will explore the entrepreneurial journey in the clean cooking sector, reflecting on both challenges and successes.

Week 3: Innovating Financing Instruments for Clean Cooking

Financing remains a critical challenge in the clean cooking sector, and historical investment levels have not been commensurate with needs. This session will investigate the level of investment needed to achieve universal access to MECS and explore key innovations when it comes to financing.

Week 4: Accelerating Access to MECS: Systems-level Priorities and the Role of Policy

Looking ahead, there are several systems-level priority areas that will move the needle on clean cooking access. This session will explore these sector-wide, systems-level recommendations, while also examining the role of policy in accelerating access to MECS.

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