The ECOWAS Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (ECREEE) in collaboration with the International Centre for Energy, Environment & Development (ICEED) conducted a capacity building programme for scientists and representatives of the clean cooking energy industry in West Africa on clean cookstoves testing and standards. The training programme held at the ICEED Clean Energy Development Centre in Afikpo, Ebonyi State from June 5 – 9, 2017. It brought together about thirty (30) participants from Benin, Cape Verde, Gambia, Ghana, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Togo to learn the latest developments on stove testing and standards and forge collaboration among West African countries.

Testing and standards are important to growing the market for the clean cooking energy solutions in the region. Lack of standards and regulations for clean cookstoves hinders stove manufacturers’ efforts to differentiate their stoves, and also prevents consumers, investors and donors from making informed decisions. Despite the importance of stove testing and standards, a majority of countries in the region do not have testing laboratories and lack the required capacity and awareness on stove testing and standards.

The event introduced the participants to the various stove testing protocols and the requirements for completing a stove test, analysis and certification. Participants were also introduced to the Laboratory Emissions Monitoring System and its application in stove testing, analysis and certification using the Water Boiling Test (WBT) Protocol. There was hands-on training for everyone on stove testing, results entry, analysis and the process of grading and certifying stoves in Tiers.

The event also discussed the development of national and regional standards for clean cookstoves and the participation of all ECOWAS countries in the ISO process. The Head of ECREEE delegation, Bah Saho, restated the commitment of ECOWAS in harmonizing standards on clean cooking. The first step towards achieving this objective is this training programme that sets the platform for regional skill base for harmonizing standards and ensuring that each country is able to provide quality assurance on clean cooking. With support from regional and international bodies, ECREEE hopes to support each country in the region to build clean cookstoves testing training centres.

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