Summary


Most urban households in Ghana cook on charcoal, using inefficient, polluting stoves made of thin sheet metal. The cost of charcoal is a significant proportion of household income. Nearly three quarters of charcoal production in Ghana comes from unsustainable wood, which means that using charcoal contributes to deforestation. Replacing inefficient traditional cook stoves with more efficient and cleaner stoves bring both environmental benefits and social and economic benefits to households who rely on traditional fuels such as wood or charcoal for cooking. Toyola Energy limited, a for-profit company was started in Ghana in 2003 by two Ghanaian entrepreneurs with financial support from E+Co. The company manufactures and sells the energy efficient charcoal cook stove "Toyola Coalpot" to Ghana's urban poor population.

 

Contents
  1. Objective
  2. Target Group
  3. Output
  4. Key Features of the Case
  5. Sustainable Financing
  6. Supportive Policies and Institutional Environment
  7. Building Local Capacity and Skills
  8. Community Participation and Including Local Stakeholders
  9. Achieving Co-Benefits
  10. Affordability and Technical Issues
  11. Local Champions
  12. Monitoring and Evaluation
  13. Replicability and Scaling-up
  14. Contact
  15. References and Further Reading

 

Objective


To manufactures and sell the energy efficient charcoal cook stove "Toyola Coalpot" to Ghana's urban poor population.

 

Target Group


 Ghana's urban poor population

 


Output


  • Based on a survey of stove use, an estimated 143,000 stoves (93% of the total sold) are currently in use. With an average of 5.2 people per household and 50 people per commercial stove, this means that about 940,000 people benefit from Toyola stoves.
  • Toyola employs five people directly and provides work to approximately 300 self-employed artisans.
  • Annual stove sales have increased from 21,000 in 2007 to 52,000 in 2010, with a total of 154,000 sold by the end of March 2011.
  • The stoves currently in use are saving about 26,000 tonnes of charcoal each year and about 150,000 tonnes CO2e per year.
  • In 2009/10 Toyola Energy ltd. had an income of USD 550,000, 72% from stove sales and 28%from carbon finance.

 

Key Features of the Case


  • Quality assurance and standardization systems were put in place to secure the quality and performance of the stove.
  • Training programs for artisans to ensure compliance with quality standards.
  • A credit scheme allows customers to pay in convenient installments over time from the savings they make due to lower charcoal consumption.
  • A mobile stove delivery model brings the products to the doorsteps of consumers.
  • A tracing system was put in place. Each stove is equipped with a serial number and Toyola keeps records of who assembles each stove, who sells it and who buys it. 
  • Access to Carbon Finance. Toyola stoves are registered for Gold Standard carbon finance, and there is regular monitoring of stoves in use, surveys of users, and audits of greenhouse gas savings.

 

Sustainable Financing


The project is a private initiative running on private investments. Funding for the project has come from E+CO who makes debt and equity clean energy investments. The initial investment was made in 2006 and was a loan of US$70,000 for the purchase of a truck and supplies. Since then E+Co has made two additional loans to Toyola each in the amount of US$100,000. These loans were given as advance funding to be paid back by future carbon revenues.

 

Access to carbon funding has been important for securing sustainable ongoing funding. In 2009 it was documented that the program is saving on non-renewable biomass and the first third party verification of emission reductions was done for the period of 2007-2009. The total offset in this period was calculated by Berkeley Air Monitoring Group to be 51,230 tons of CO2. This verification led to generation of the first credits to be sold under the Gold Standard in 2009/2010. In 2009/2010 the total income from carbon finance was USD 140,000.

 

The ability of the project to generate its own income through carbon financing has two main advantages. Firstly, carbon financing gives an income stream for the project that has a long time horizon. Secondly, carbon financing permits continual growth of the project. Carbon Finance favours commercialised production with the ability to grow continually and yield higher levels of emission reductions and more revenue. Stoves sold in previous years continue to accumulate credits as long as they are still in operation. Accessing carbon finance has made it possible for Toyola to up-scale its activities and to grow but the need for capital by both producers and end-users is still a constraint. Toyola is looking for a suitable bank or MFI partnership, and is also considering setting up a separate finance subsidiary.

 

The main barrier in terms of replicating the programme is to reach large numbers of users which requires the type of quality control systems and sales and finance network that Toyola has built up (and that GERES has built up in a similarly successful stove project in Cambodia). This is costly and requires a diverse project team in terms of skills and capacity.

 

Supportive Policies and Institutional Environment


N/A

 

Building Local Capacity and Skills


Toyola actively trains new managers, ceramic artisans, metal workers and technicians to be employed with Toyola. Everyone involved in production goes through a mandatory training program on how to build the improved stove of the required quality and how to comply with the Toyola specifications. By 2011, they had trained approximately 300 new artisans in the skills needed to manufacture efficient stoves. Training new workers takes 1-3 months, depending on the individual and the skills they are aiming to achieve.

 

Besides the actual technical training, the training program explains the advantages of joining the system, of monitoring and quality control, and notion of quality and fair remuneration for the product. 5 centralized production and training centers has been set up in different parts of Ghana. This centralized approach was chosen to keep the cost of training down by taking advantage of economies of scale and to create a learning and sharing platform for new producers. Bringing together stove producers facilitated interaction and networking and people got the chance to discuss and learn about production methods with other producers. Toyola also train users on proper use of the stove to extend the lifespan of the stove.

 

Community Participation and Including Local Stakeholders


The project is taking a demand driven and commercialised approach to guide both the stove development and to drive consumer demand for the stoves. The demand among users and willingness to pay for the product has been crucial to the success of the intervention. There is a demand for the stove among poor households due to the fact that it saves on cooking fuel and because it is relatively inexpensive. The payback time of the investment due to fuel savings is 3-4 months. This demand has been increased and new markets have been developed through awareness raising and promotional campaigns to increase knowledge among new potential customers about the stove and its economic, social and environmental benefits.

 

As women and children are most severely affected by the adverse health impacts of cooking on traditional stoves they are the ones benefiting most if the household decide to invest in a new cook stove. In many cases though it is men who decide on new investments for the household and smoke in the kitchen or long cooking hours may not be a valid reason for making a new investment. Therefore engaging men and raising awareness of especially the economical benefits of this new technology was an important part of the project.

 

The stove design was developed in collaboration with the users and artisans to make sure the improved stove design complied with local cooking practises and consumer needs. The final stove design was a result of various optimisation, testing and user acceptance phases in order to better target the demand of the consumer groups.

 

Achieving Co-Benefits


While the stoves reduce greenhouse gas emissions and decrease deforestation, they also provide co-benefits to users and families in the form of relief from high fuel costs, reduced exposure to health-damaging airborne pollutants, faster cooking (resulting in time-savings), and increased cleanliness and convenience. User surveys show that food cooks more quickly. Women save about 30 minutes per day, which they use mainly for family time and relaxation.

 

The heat retention of the liner means that food keeps warm for longer, and the insulated stove base can be used like an oven for roasting vegetables while a pot cooks on the top. Burns are reduced by over 90% and the person cooking does not get so hot. Health surveys show reduced incidence of eye irritation, shortage of breath and coughing.

 

User surveys in 2010 showed that households with Coalpots spent about GHC 160/year on charcoal compared with their pre-Coalpot expense of GHC 200/year. This saving of GHC 40 (US$27) per year is significant for households with cash incomes that are typically about GHC 1,200 (US$800) per year. It means that the cost of buying a Coalpot can be recovered from savings in charcoal within three to four months. Furthermore income is generated within the supply chain, with traders and agents earning about 10% of the retail price on each sale.

 

Affordability and Technical Issues


Toyola gives up to two months credit to its direct customers, and also to its dealers and
sales agents who can pass the credit on to their customers. 75% of customers use credit,
20% pay cash, and a few pay by bartering produce such as cassava. About one third of
credit customers use a 'Toyola money box' to reserve their savings on charcoal, and use this
money to make their credit payments.

 

Local Champions


The two entrepreneurs Suraj Wahab and Ernest Kyei with financial support from E+Co have been the drivers behing the success of the Toyola stove.

 

Monitoring and Evaluation


An important part of Toyola's strategy has been to introduce standards for the stove and certification and monitoring systems. Standardizing the product has been important first of all to ensure a reliable fuel saving for the consumer. Certifying the producer and making a tracing system has been important to ensure quality consistency in the production and in order for the producer to easily communicate their status as qualified producers to the consumer.

 

Furthermore in order for the project to generate verified carbon credits that can be sold on the carbon markets the project's emission reductions need to be verified by a third party. Rigid monitoring and evaluation systems needs to be in place in order to prove that the project saves the amount of CO2 it claims and that the savings would not have happened without the project being implemented. Each year a third party verifier is verifying the reduced CO2 emissions based on the documentation on sales and usage of the stoves recorded on a monthly basis by Toyola.

 

Replicability and Scaling-up


Toyola Energy has grown rapidly since it started selling stoves in 2007, but demand for stoves in Ghana outstrips supply. To meet this demand, Toyola is planning to open new production centres in other parts of Ghana, and to start producing wood-burning stoves as another option for regions of the country that mainly use wood. Every artisan directly trained by Toyola agrees to train two further people, so that the number of skilled workers can grow rapidly.

 

 

There is demand from other countries in West Africa with similar cooking styles. Toyola recently opened a production and training centre in Togo and currently exports to Burkina Faso. There are plans to open similar facilities in Benin, Sierra Leone and Nigeria in the next two years. By 2013, Toyola hopes to have sold a further 140,000 stoves. Carbon finance is enabling Toyola to grow, but the need for capital by both producers and end-users is still a constraint. Toyola is looking for a suitable bank or MFI partnership, and is also considering setting up a separate finance subsidiary.

 

The technology is not difficult for others to replicate. However, to reach large numbers of users requires the type of quality control systems and sales and finance network that Toyola has built up [1].

 

Contact


Mr. Suraj Ologburo

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Address FAASE VILLAGE, SAPEIMAN

P.O.BOX OF266, OFANKOR

ACCRA, GREATER ACCRA REGION,

OF 266

Ghana

 

Mr. Ernest Kwasi Kyei

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Phone +233 24 311 5898 Fax Calling/Fax Instructions

 

References and Further Reading


Name:

Toyola Efficient Charcoal Cook Stoves

Country:

Ghana

Location:

Print

Implementer:

Ghanaian company that manufactures and sells energy efficient cook stoves in urban and rural Ghana.

Toyola Energy Limited was founded in 2006 by Suraj Wahab Ologburo, a former accountant and Ernest Kwasi Kyei, an engineer, both of whom had been trained in stove production under the Ghana Household Energy programme (GHEP). They obtained a loan from E+Co to start commercial production and sales, providing work to 77 other artisans including some trained under GHEP. Further loans and carbon finance have enabled the growth of the business, which by April 2011 had five production centres in different parts of Ghana and one in the neighbouring Republic of Togo.

Contact:

Mr. Suraj Ologburo

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Address FAASE VILLAGE, SAPEIMAN

P.O.BOX OF266, OFANKOR

ACCRA, GREATER ACCRA REGION,

OF 266

Ghana

 

Mr. Ernest Kwasi Kyei

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Phone +233 24 311 5898 Fax Calling/Fax Instructions

Technology:

Fuel efficient charcoal stove

Energy resource:

  • Biomass

Sub type:

  • Charcoal

Sector:

  • Household
  • Commercial
  • Restaurant

Service:

  • Cooking

Grid:

  • National Grid

Targeted area:

  • Urban
  • Peri-urban

Geographical scope:

National

Project status:

Operational project

Project start:

2003

End date:

N/A

Implementing approach:

Private

Funding Type:

  • Loan

Budget (Euro):

>100,000