Promoting Access to Clean Indoor AirRATIONALE
Over 2.5 billion people, mostly poor in the developing countries, depend on biomass sources to meet their household energy requirements. Burning of biomass in poorly ventilated kitchens creates indoor air pollution due to high concentrations of carbon monoxide, particulate matter and other pollutants. Women and children are most vulnerable to exposure from indoor air pollution, which is very closely associated with acute respiratory infections and is estimated to cause around 1.6 million deaths annually. In much of the developing world, women and children also bear the bulk of the burden of gathering fuelwood and other biomass (e.g. dung, crop waste). Improved fuels, technologies, and cooking practices can reduce respiratory illnesses, headaches and eye infections from smoke exposure; opportunity costs due to time spent collecting fuel; pressures on scarce fuel resources; neck and back injuries and other risks from fuel collection; and expenditures where fuel is purchased.
The Partnership for Clean Indoor Air (PCIA) is a rapidly growing public-private partnership of more than 350 organizations increasing the use of energy efficient, clean cooking technologies and fuels. PCIA's goal is to increase the use of clean, reliable, affordable, efficient, and safe home cooking and heating practices that reduce exposure to indoor air pollution.
The Partnership focuses on four priority areas which have proved to be essential elements for sustainable household energy and health programs in developing countries:
PCIA Partners currently work in over 115 countries. Key Partners have reported helping households to adopt clean cooking and heating practices, reducing harmful exposures for more than 12 million people in the last two reporting years alone (2007-2008). These Partners have set a goal of disseminating almost 11 million more stoves in 2010, and doubling their efforts yearly.
PCIA supports its Partners through capacity building and technical assistance; project implementation; and knowledge management:
Capacity Building – The Partnership provides in-depth technical training in community outreach and education, stove design and performance, market development, and indoor air pollution and socio-economic impact monitoring. PCIA also supports active information exchange to help researchers, entrepreneurs, project implementers, and program directors learn from one another through regional workshops and international meetings and forums. Proceedings from past events are available at www.pciaonline.org/proceedings.
Technical Assistance – The Partnership supports stove testing and technical training and offers technology design and performance guides to increase the capacity of partners to design and manufacture clean, efficient, and safe cooking and heating technologies.
Knowledge Management – On behalf of PCIA, Winrock publishes the quarterly PCIA Bulletin, which highlights the activities of the Partnership and its Partners around the world to raise awareness about issues related to indoor air pollution, household energy, and health. The PCIA website (http://www.pciaonline.org) provides visitors with background information on household energy and health; PCIA publications; links to more extensive information through other websites, documents and networks; news and events updates; and highlights of Partner accomplishments through organizational profiles, project interactive map updates, videos and other Partner inputs.
Winrock has supported coordination and execution of training, workshops, meetings and forums since 2003; edits and publishes the Bulletin; and developed and continues to manage the website.