With open fires and traditional cookstoves causing
millions of injuries and deaths annually, a new document from ISO represents a
major first step towards defining criteria for clean, efficient and safe
The ISO International Workshop Agreement* IWA
11:2012, Guidelines for evaluating cookstove performance, is
the first document of its type backed by international consensus.
According to the World Health Organization, exposure
to smoke from traditional cookstoves and open fires causes two million
premature deaths annually, with women and young children among the most
affected. In addition, open fires and traditional cookstoves increase pressures
on local environmental resources (e.g., forests, habitats) and contribute to
climate change at the regional and global levels.
IWA 11 represents a critical first step towards a
common understanding of how to define and verify clean stoves and fuels among
all affected countries and stakeholders, and to encourage innovation to find
even better cooking solutions.
Its use is expected to reduce the risks of
cookstoves to health and safety, and facilitate the large-scale adoption of
clean cooking solutions that will serve nearly half of the world’s population –
three billion people in the developing world.
Radha Muthiah, Executive Director of the Global
Alliance for Clean Cookstoves, comments: “The ISO IWA represents a significant
step forward in global efforts to scale up clean cookstoves and fuels as it
provides guidance for rating cookstoves on four performance indicators: fuel
use, total emissions, indoor emissions, and safety. Standards can give stove
makers affirmation of product quality, let users know they are making a
worthwhile investment, and drive industry innovation.”
In the USA, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has
affirmed the US Government’s commitment to contributing to a solution to the
issue. “People have cooked over open fires and dirty stoves for all of human
history, but the simple fact is they are slowly killing millions of people and
polluting the environment,” said Secretary Clinton.
“But today, because of technological breakthroughs,
new carbon financing tools, and growing private sector engagement, we can
finally envision a future in which open fires and dirty stoves are replaced by
clean, efficient, and affordable stoves and fuels all over the world – stoves
that still cost as little as USD 25.”
IWA 11 is the result of an International Workshop on
cookstoves organized by the Partnership for Clean Indoor Air (PCIA) and the
Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves (the Alliance), with the American National
Standards Institute (ANSI) as the secretariat. During the two-day conference
held in February 2012, in the Hague, Netherlands, more than 80 public- and
private-sector stakeholders representing more than 20 countries worked toward
facilitating the widespread use of clean, efficient, and safe cookstove
technology through standardization.
S. Joe Bhatia, ANSI President and CEO, comments: We
can’t imagine a more critical issue than the health and safety of millions of
people around the world. We are proud to play a leadership role in the efforts
to assure the safety of cookstoves, and look forward to the tremendous impact
this global partnership can achieve.”
IWA 11:2012, Guidelines for evaluating
cookstove performance, is available from ISO national member institutes
(see the complete list with contact
details). It may also be obtained directly from the ISO Central Secretariat,
price 50 Swiss francs, through the ISO Store or
by contacting the Marketing, Communication & Information department.
* An International Workshop Agreement (IWA) is an
ISO document produced through an international workshop rather than through the
full ISO technical committee process. Market players and other stakeholders
directly participate in developing an IWA and do not have to go through a
national delegation. An IWA can be developed swiftly (published in less than 12
months) to address a rapidly emerging market need or public policy requirement.
03 July, 2012.