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Results BriefsJanuary 19, 2023

Moving the Needle on Clean Cooking for All

The World Bank has been increasing its financing to the clean cooking sector. Over the last seven years, between July 2015 and June 2022, the World Bank provided about US$562 million for clean or improved cooking, to support 43 million people across 30 access-deficit countries. Catalyzing the Energy Sector Management Assistance Program’s (ESMAP) Clean Cooking Fund (CCF), the World Bank continues to hold clean cooking as a corporate priority and aims to support access for up to 100 million people in 2022–2026 through mobilizing political commitment, scaling up investments, and promoting innovations.


In 2020, 2.4 billion people cooked with traditional polluting fuels and technologies worldwide. The associated premature deaths from household air pollution totaled nearly 3.2 million annually, mainly affecting women and children. Nonrenewable wood fuels for cooking accounted for a gigaton of COemissions, and burning residential solid fuels comprised 58 percent of black carbon emissions. The cost of inaction for health, gender, and climate/environment is $2.4 trillion annually.

Without accelerated action, the 2022 Tracking Sustainable Development Goal 7 report estimates 2 billion people will not have access to clean cooking technologies in 2030. Progress requires political commitment, investments, knowledge, and innovation centered on the needs of end-users. Priority must be given to improvements of the overall ecosystem.


The World Bank is tackling the multisector development challenge of clean cooking access by catalyzing action through political prioritization, financing, knowledge creation, and partnerships. The World Bank is mainstreaming clean cooking into energy-access projects at the country and regional level.  The World Bank’s Energy Compact presented to the United Nations High-Level Dialogue on Energy in 2021 commits support to providing up to 100 million people with access to clean cooking by 2025.  Aligned with this commitment, one of the World Bank’s  corporate priorities is to track annual progress in helping people gain access to clean cooking during the International Development Association 20 (IDA20) cycle between July 2022–and June 2025. To further galvanize political commitment and investment, the World Bank established the CCF through the ESMAP in 2019. With a funding target of US$500 million, the aim is to catalyze US$2 billion in public and private investments to help 200 million people gain access to clean cooking.

This stove has made my cooking so easy these days. I wish everyone knew how good it is. It feels like I’m using gas.
Hellen Jikoko
Stove user, Kampala, Uganda


  • The World Bank’s clean-cooking policies, programs, and strategies are improving the sector ecosystem and achieving development outcomes. From July 2015 to June 2022, the World Bank’s clean-cooking support totaled US$562 million across 30 countries, targeting 43 million people with access to clean and improved cooking solutions.
  • The US$80 million, clean-cooking component of the China Hebei Air Pollution Prevention and Control  Program using the Program-for-Results (PforR) instrument helped 1.22 million households replace coal stoves with gas (1.09 million) and electric (0.14 million) cooking and heating appliances, well exceeding the target of 0.8 million households. Particulate Matter 2.5 (PM2.5) emissions reductions totaled 5,000 tons, surpassing the target by 3,700 tons. Building on the experience and lessons learned from the project, the World Bank is preparing PforR operations to supporting Clean Air Action Programs in Uttar Pradesh and in Haryana in India by promoting clean cooking to reduce reliance on burning traditional biomass which is the top contributor to air pollution in these states.
  • The Uganda Clean Cooking Supply Chain Expansion Project, with US$2.2 million in grant financing, introduced five high-efficiency, quality-assured biomass stove types to the market. By program close in 2020, 72,535 units had been sold. The average reduction in monthly household fuel consumption was 36 percent, with an equivalent increase in financial savings and reduction in carbon emissions. Women reported 30–90 minutes in daily freed up time for other household chores, caring for children, and rest. A follow-on Electricity Access Scale-up Project, co-financed by CCF (a total amount of $20 million: $10 million IDA, $10 million CCF), will benefit 1.66 million people and 600 public institutions with clean cooking access.
  • The World Bank supported the Bangladesh Improved Cookstove Program through its Rural Electrification and Renewable Energy Development II (RERED II) Project to disseminate 1 million improved cookstoves. In 2018, the project mobilized additional finance of $40 million ($20 million from the Green Climate Fund and $20 million from IDA) to reach 4 million more households by 2023.  As of June 2022, the project helped 3.4 million people gain access to efficient and improved cooking solutions, creating 3000 jobs, saving 5.34 million tons per year of biomass fuel, and reducing emissions by 4.14 million tons per year.
  • The first CCF co-financed project Rwanda Energy Access and Quality Improvement Project (EAQIP), approved in September 2020, includes a $20 million clean cooking component with $10 million IDA and $10 million CCF grant. The EAQIP Project aims to expand access to clean cooking to more than 2 million people across Rwanda and has adopted a pro-poor results-based financing (RBF) approach by providing more incentives to the poorer households. As of September 2022, 24 cooking technologies have been tested eligible for the program and more than 6000 stoves have been sold to peri-urban and rural households. In addition, EAQIP has recently catalyzed $10.8 million carbon finance from the Carbon Initiative for Development Fund to purchase carbon credits generated through clean cooking and off-grid operations. The carbon revenue will flow back to the RBF fund to make it revolve. The project has also expanded support to institutional cooking by helping 150 schools to access clean cooking solutions.
The clean cooking result-financing program has helped us to promote clean cooking technologies to save time and money, and protect ourselves and our global environment.
Enterprise Multiservice Limited

Bank Group Contribution

From July 2015 to June 2022, the World Bank’s clean-cooking support totaled US$562 million across 30 access-deficit countries: $281 million from IBRD, $115 million from IDA, $36 million from CCF, $20 million from GCF, and $110 million from other Trust Funds including GEF and Ci-Dev. 


The World Bank engages with external partners on knowledge sharing, policy coordination, and hosting of joint events, and webinars at the global and country levels. The external partners include the Clean Cooking Alliance, World Food Programme, UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, UN Development Programme (UNDP), World Health Organization (WHO), Energizing Development (EnDev), and Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit GmbH (GiZ). The World Bank is implementing the Modern Energy Cooking Services Program  together with Loughborough University. 

Looking Ahead

CCF-supported country projects systematically strengthen sector development through supporting the enabling environment, suppliers, and end users. CCF has co-financed projects in Rwanda, Niger, Mozambique, Uganda, and Tanzania which are under implementation. Critical design elements and lessons can be contextualized and replicated across countries. Globally, the World Bank co-convened the Heath and Energy Platform of Action together with the WHO and UNDP and is part of the High-Level Coalition on Health and Energy to strengthen health-and-energy-sector cooperation, increase political momentum, spur investments, mobilize public support, and drive practical solutions.

As a woman in a rural area with lower financial means, the clean cooking results-based financing project has contributed to saving my time wasted while collecting firewood. With the improved and modern cookstoves distributed through the clean cooking results-based financing project, I managed to save the quantity of firewood I used to spend; before, I used to spend FRW 700 per day and now, I am spending FRW 700 in 4 days.
Uzamukunda Annonciata
Stove user, Rwanda.