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Can Improved Biomass Cookstoves Contribute to REDD+ Contracts in Low- Income Countries? Initial Results from a Randomized Trial in Ethiopia Zenebe Gebreegziabher,

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Presentation on theme: "Can Improved Biomass Cookstoves Contribute to REDD+ Contracts in Low- Income Countries? Initial Results from a Randomized Trial in Ethiopia Zenebe Gebreegziabher,"— Presentation transcript:

1 Can Improved Biomass Cookstoves Contribute to REDD+ Contracts in Low- Income Countries? Initial Results from a Randomized Trial in Ethiopia Zenebe Gebreegziabher, EfD Initiative and Mekele University Abebe Damte, EfD Initiative Alemu Mekonnen, EfD Initiative and Addis Ababa University Michael Toman, World Bank Randy Bluffstone, Portland State and EfD Initiative Sahan Dissanayake, Colby College Peter Martinsson, Gothenburg University Funding from The World Bank is gratefully acknowledged

2 Climate Change Motivation Earth now is hotter than in ¾ of the last 11,000 years (Marcott et al, 2013) With medium confidence 1983 -2012 was the hottest in 1400 years (IPCC, 2013). Concentrations of CO 2 in atmosphere higher than last 800,000 years (IPCC, 2013) With high confidence CO 2 increase in last 100 years unprecedented in last 22,000 years (IPCC, 2013) Additional warming baked in as climate warms to adjust carbon balance. Not yet in climate equilibrium All possible cost-effective climate change mitigation measures should be undertaken immediately

3 Key Research Question Are improved biomass cookstoves in developing countries a potentially cost- effective climate change mitigation measure?

4 Objectives of the Paper Evaluate whether the MIRT stove, which is an important improved biomass cookstove promoted in Ethiopia, saves wood compared with the traditional 3-stone technology Assess MIRT user satisfaction Draw conclusions about the MIRT stove as a potential input-based REDD+ contract element

5 Biomass Cooking and Climate Change Almost 3 people billion cook with wood on a regular basis (IEA, 2011), typically taking biomass from forests. In SSA 60%-90% cook with biomass, with Ethiopia dependence at >90% About half of wood biomass is carbon. Burning the biomass releases previously-sequestered above-ground carbon into the atmosphere Burning also emits black carbon particles (CC forcer) and organic carbon (cooling aerosol)

6 Two Key Conditions for Improved Biomass Stoves to Play a Role in Climate Change Mitigation Improved stoves generate net fuelwood savings and therefore keep carbon sequestered – Each cooking event saves wood – Leakage (i.e. “rebound effect”) is limited Cooks use the improved stoves on a regular basis – Unobservable to policymakers and analysts under normal circumstances – User satisfaction is important

7 Potential Non-Climate Benefits of Improved Cookstoves Reduced fuelwood use – Reduced expenditures – Collection time savings benefits Less indoor air pollution and better human health Cleaner clothes Reduced cooking time More convenient to use

8 Improved Cookstove History Goes back to at least 1960 (Singer et al, 1961) Major policy focus in 1970s and 1980s focusing on “appropriate technology” to address the “fuelwood crisis” in developing countries Experience was largely judged a failure (Manibog, 1984; Barnes et al, 1993) – People did not like the stoves promoted – Fuelwood savings in field often much less than claimed or they even used more than traditional stoves Current focus mainly on emissions rather than fuelwood savings

9 Ethiopian MIRT Stove Developed and promoted in Ethiopia since 1998 by GIZ as an alternative to the traditional technology, which is a 3-stone stove MIRT stove is primarily for cooking injera Claimed to use 50% less wood and reduce indoor emissions by 90% in lab experiments Market price is about $6.00 Part of initiative by Federal Government of Ethiopia to distribute 9.4 million improved stoves



12 Evaluation Methods Follows standard random sampling methods used to identify effects (108 households in 3 regional states) Controlled cooking tests (CCT) with MIRT and traditional stoves conducted in May/June 2013 and October/November 2013, with exactly 4kg teff flour and similar fuelwood (as possible) provided to each participant. Weigh fuelwood before and after (including char). Measure cooking time. Conduct paired t- test Satisfaction assessed in October/November 2013 using survey method

13 Findings: Fuelwood Use In pooled sample MIRT stove on average uses 291 grams (26%) less than traditional (p< 0.01) First round savings 22% (221 grams, p=0.04) and second round 31% (353 grams, p<0.01) Savings significant for Oromiya and Amhara, but not for SNNP Regional State Conclusions: MIRT stove saves wood, but experience and region may matter (SNNP more forest-rich state)

14 Findings: Cooking Time Using pooled data MIRT stove on average takes 7.13 minutes longer than traditional stove (p<0.01) First round average time difference 12.38 minutes (p=<0.01) Second round cooking takes 2.14 minutes longer (p=0.49) Conclusions: MIRT stove probably does not save time, but may not take longer. Experience may matter

15 Findings: Satisfaction 100% of users rated MIRT stove as good or very good (80% rated very good) Reduced smoke and convenience ranked particularly high (>80% very good) 90% said they would buy the stove at full market price 75% said they would advise neighbors to buy at full market price Conclusion: People seem to like the stoves

16 Findings: Reported Use 85% said they use the stove 1-3 times per week 94% said they made more than 11 injera per cooking event (18% 21-30 injera) 96% say they use the MIRT stove for injera and 88% also have a second 3-stone stove for stews, coffee and breads 84% also say they use the chimney side for stews, coffee and hot water Conclusion: People report using the stove for the right applications

17 Implications for REDD+ At 26% fuelwood savings, MIRT stove could save 125 kg per year or 62.5 kg carbon. For a program of 9.4 million stoves, the MIRT stove would save about 1.18 million tons of wood or 600,000 tons of carbon per year. There are about 3.67 tons of CO 2 per ton of carbon and February 2014 California CO 2 auction price is $11.38 per ton. Total CO 2 value for a 9.4 million stove program is $24.5 million or $2.70/household/year. At 2012 voluntary CO 2 price of $6/ton value is less than $2.00/household/year.

18 Additional REDD+ Implications MIRT stoves break even at zero discount rate after 2-3 years if the only cost is for the stove and the only benefit is carbon payment at current prices. With inconvenience costs and probably very high discount rates, payback period increases. Conclusions: Carbon benefit insufficient alone to spur adoption, but REDD+ payments could be part of a package of benefits

19 Do Non-Carbon Benefits Call Into Question REDD+ Payments? Carbon possibly not additional if MIRT stoves are indeed wildly popular on their own Depends on counterfactual, which is a function of behavior that clearly matters. – Lab tests say 50% fuelwood reduction likely – 40% reduction is at 95 th percentile – 12% at 5 th percentile With no additionality and limited leakage, aren’t responsible FCCC Annex 1 countries then free-riding on Ethiopians’ investments? Estimates clearly suggest that non-carbon benefits are needed to spur adoption. Conclusion: Circumstances may support free distribution and replacement of MIRT stoves and no other payments

20 Outstanding Questions (Some Under Investigation) How big are the indoor air quality benefits? Do households save collection time? Do households indeed regularly use the MIRT stoves? Are there really “experience effects?” Do the terms under which stoves are provided affect per-meal fuelwood savings and stove use (i.e. carbon benefits)? Are respondents “yeah-saying” in the satisfaction survey?

21 Thank You! Randy Bluffstone Portland State University and EfD Initiative

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