Our engagements represent a range of ways in which we have developed mutually beneficial partnerships that support companies to manage risk, enhance their reputation and undertake critical research and development.
We are delighted to partner with the Ikea Foundation to bring renewable energy to refugees and their host communities. Jointly with UNHCR this three year partnership will provide 60,000 displaced people in Jordan and Rwanda with access to off-grid renewable energy so they can power their homes, schools, clinics and businesses. The project will bring clean, renewable energy for lighting, cooking and powering tools and appliances, allowing entrepreneurs to flourish and enabling the socio-economic integration of refugees in to local society.
Floods affect more people globally than any other natural hazard and cause some of the largest economic, social and humanitarian losses, with flood events becoming less predictable as rainfall patterns are affected by climate change. The greatest impacts are felt in poor and marginalised communities with the least capacity to cope. To combat this, Practical Action is working with the Zurich Insurance Group in the five-year Zurich Flood Resilience Alliance, building on a ten year relationship, to help flood-prone communities in developing countries increase their resilience. In 2014, the consortium was recognised with a UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC) Momentum For Change award, being highlighted as one of twelve projects around the world which demonstrate climate change action that is scalable, innovative and replicable.
For roughly 668 million people in rural India, something as simple as cooking can create a deadly threat. The majority of people still use traditional fuels: animal dung, agricultural waste and wood. The energy efficiency of these sources is very low, meaning that cooking enough to feed a family is a constant struggle. Johnson Matthey - a leading speciality chemicals company - is working with us to roll out clean cook stoves in Odisha, India. The need for firewood for cooking leads to serious devastation of the surrounding forests, but the level of deforestation doesn’t even translate into a reasonable supply of fuel. People in the region – especially women - can spend a whole day collecting firewood for two or three days supply. Most dangerous of all, the use of traditional fuels can cause fatal respiratory problems and it is estimated that it causes 400,000 premature deaths every year. The innovative solution? A clean cook-stove, which runs far more efficiently and provides a faster, cleaner and much safer way to cook.
What links the first carbon credit scheme to be registered in Sudan, liquefied petroleum gas and a group of intrepid local women? The Darfur Low Smoke Stoves Project, created by Practical Action in partnership with Carbon Clear. All over Darfur in Sudan, there are families cooking with indoor wood fires, which fill the houses with toxic smoke. Globally, indoor smoke pollution causes more deaths than malaria, HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis combined. The constant need for wood to replenish these fires also causes major deforestation, turning vast swathes of Darfur into desert. The impact of indoor pollution on Darfur is devastating, but the solution brought by the low smoke stoves project is brilliantly simple. Rather than relying on firewood, the project finances stoves which use Liquid Petroleum Gas, a cleaner, safer and much more efficient fuel and in the process has established Sudan’s first registered carbon credit scheme.
Many schools in remote Andean communities lack basic services such as electricity and clean drinking water. Students’ learning achievement is often low and there is little opportunity to access information and communications technology, leaving these communities isolated from many of the advantages of modern education. We are thrilled to work with Aspera, a highly specialised provider of software asset management solutions, to pilot the use of clean energy sources in eight schools in the Apurimac region of Peru. The introduction of solar panels will enable these schools to access basic services, such as energy and clean water. ICT equipment, including laptops, servers, screens and routers will be provided connecting schools to the internet and enabling them to take advantage of curriculum resources developed by the Ministry of Education through the digital PeruEduca system.