SAFE Updates

World's First Refugee Camp Powered By Clean Energy

Brightening the Lives of Refugees
April 27, 2017

After two years of darkness, UNHCR is delighted to share that Azraq refugee camp in Jordan now has light. And it’s from clean energy. Watch this video to find out how becoming the first refugee camp to be powered by clean energy is changing the lives of the people living there.

Read More

On International Women's Day, WFP Highlights Impacts of SAFE Stoves for Women in Darfur (c) WFP/Marco Frattini 2013

How Safe Stoves are Lifting Millions of Women Out of Poverty

This International Women's Day, we're highlighting one of the smartest—and simplest—innovations to improve the lives of women and girls.
March 8, 2017

Even after fleeing her home to live in a camp for displaced families, Insaf struggled – like so many women – by spending hours of her day collecting firewood in a landscape where trees are few and far between. But then Insaf discovered the World Food Programme’s Safe Access to Fuel and Energy (SAFE) Initiative, where she spent nearly two weeks learning how to make fuel-efficient simple stoves and fire briquettes.

Read More

Changing Lives with SAFE Stoves in Burundi (c) International Lifeline Fund/Kaye Sulpya 2016

How SAFE Stoves are Changing People’s Lives

Less firewood, more meals and better nutrition
February 23, 2017

Lack of firewood and a four-hour daily walk to collect new supplies often meant families were undercooking or even skipping their meals in the region of Gitega, central Burundi. Now fuel-efficient stoves are transforming people's lives and also generating extra income for some families. The World Food Programme's Safe Access to Fuel and Energy, or SAFE, initiative has reached over 6 million people in 18 countries, meeting a target set in 2009. The aim now is to assist 10 million people by 2020. Here we take a closer look at Burundi's story.

Read More

Inyenyeri shop in Kigeme (c) Inyenyeri Suzanna Huber 2016

The Greener Fuel: Giving Refugees A Choice in Rwanda

February 16, 2017

In September 2016, a Rwandan social benefit company called Inyenyeri did something no private sector business had ever done before in the country. It opened shop inside a refugee camp. Its partnership with UNHCR and the clean cooking fuel option it offers refugees may be the answer to the interconnected energy, environment and protection issues people have faced here for decades.

Read More

Emissions testing, India (c) Michael Johnson, Berkeley Air Monitoring Group

UNHCR Sets Technical Specifications for Cookstove Procurement

January 30, 2017

Choosing an appropriate cookstove in humanitarian settings can be complex for organizations providing aid. To respond to these challenges, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), partnered with the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves and Berkeley Air Monitoring Group to develop a common set of performance and test standards to that could be used to evaluate cookstoves available in the market.

Read More

UNHCR Calls for Help for Refugees facing European Winter Freeze (c) UNHCR/Igor Pavicevic

UNHCR Calls for Help for Refugees Facing European Winter Freeze

The UN Refugee Agency urges governments to do more to help and protect refugees and migrants battling freezing temperatures in Europe.
January 13, 2017

With thousands of refugees and migrants sweeping across Europe in freezing winter conditions, UNHCR calls on governments to do more to help and protect them. Heat is a vital need for this population, and UNHCR has worked with authorities and other partners to provide heaters, heating fuel, thermal blankets, winter clothes and footwear.

Read More

Moving Forward with Energy: the 2016 SAFE Humanitarian Workshop (c)

Increasing Energy Access: 2016 SAFE Humanitarian Workshop

January 4, 2017

More than 80 people from 23 countries joined the third annual SAFE Humanitarian Workshop – a global event that brought together key stakeholders to learn best practices, exchange ideas, and outline future plans for how best to improve energy access for refugees, internally displaced persons, and those affected by natural disasters.

Read More

Safe Stoves Ignite Change for Women Like Hanan (c) WFP/AlaKheir

Safe Stoves Ignite Change for Women Like Hanan

Story from Darfur Highlights Benefits
August 30, 2016

The World Food Programme (WFP)'s SAFE programmes have reached millions of people in 15 countries since 2009, including Burundi, Ethiopia, Haiti, Kenya, Sri Lanka and Uganda, as well as Sudan. This is the story of Hanan Abdalla Mohammed. She lives in Shagra village in Darfur, Sudan, and has six children. Hanan is involved in a WFP project to help women safely cook food for themselves and their families.

Read More

Naijabrics training on paper waste briquette-making in Durumi and New Kuchingoro’s camp, Abuja (c) Naijabrics, Nigeria 2016

Empowering IDPs through Production of Cleaner Fuels

Source: Nigerian Alliance for Clean Cookstoves (NACC)
August 1, 2016

NAIJABRICS is training IDPs on the production of paper-based briquettes in Durumi and New Kuchingoro’s camp, Abuja. So far, over 200,000 briquettes have been produced over a period of 18 months. Some of the IDPs trained have been employed by the project and from their incomes, many were able to send for their families displaced in Cameroon and be reunited with them.

Read More

Advocating for Energy Access at the World Humanitarian Summit (c) UNHCR 2016

What It’s Like to Live in a Refugee Settlement without Energy

June 17, 2016

Halima Mohamed, a Somali refugee living in Nakivale Settlement in Uganda, where she serves as a Refugee Ambassador for UNHCR, describes the hardships of living in a refugee settlement without access to cooking or lighting energy.

Read More

World Humanitarian Summit Side Event - Susan Myers, Laurent Thomas, Sandip Verma, Ben Good (c)

Advocating for Energy Access at the World Humanitarian Summit

May 25, 2016

“Crisis-affected people need more access to energy, clean fuel, and efficient cookstoves.” This was the message delivered by the Alliance at the World Humanitarian Summit (WHS) in Istanbul this week. Along with the World Food Programme (WFP), the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), Mercy Corps, and other key partners, the Alliance advocated to make energy access for heating, lighting, cooking, and powering a higher priority in humanitarian interventions. Energy access impacts nearly every area of humanitarian response and is key to addressing Core Responsibilities 3 and 4 in the UN Secretary-General's Agenda for Humanity.

Read More

Join the SAFE WG in Advocating for Humanitarian Energy Access at the World Humanitarian Summit (c) UNHCR B. Bannon Kenya 2011

Energy Matters for Crisis-Affected People

Join the SAFE Working Group in Advocating for Humanitarian Energy Access at the World Humanitarian Summit
April 8, 2016

Energy access is a critical, life-saving component of humanitarian response. The World Humanitarian Summit is an historic opportunity to advocate for the importance of energy access for heating, lighting, cooking, and powering for people living in humanitarian settings. Join the SAFE Humanitarian Working Group's #EnergyMatters campaign to spread the word!

Read More

Inspiring Solutions That Save Lives & Support Development – 2016 Edition

by Alina O'Keeffe, AIDF and Dan Swann, Technology Exchange Lab
April 7, 2016

As part of the annual update of the guide to “Solutions That Save Lives & Support Development”, the Aid and International Development Forum (AIDF) together with the Technology Exchange Lab have researched latest technologies and innovations, which can help humanitarian actors to mitigate the future implications of these challenges. The Energy Supply section of the 2016 addition referenced innovations in humanitarian energy, referencing the SAFE Working Group and the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves.

Read More

Can Clean Cooking Help Reduce Gender-Based Violence? The Alliance Examines the Evidence (c) UNHCR  R. Gangale Dadaab Kenya May 2010

UNHCR and Alliance Team Up on Boiling Point’s “Energy in Emergency Settings”

April 5, 2016

Issue 68 of HEDON's Boiling Point Magazine explores the diverse aspects of emergency energy access, including report summaries, best practices, and refugee perspectives. It was co-edited by the UNHCR and the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves in partnership with HEDON, and features pieces from several other SAFE Working Group member organizations, including Mercy Corps, GIZ, Chatham House, UN FAO, COOPI, and the Women's Refugee Commission.

Read More

Woman cooking outside in Nepal after the earthquake devastated thousands of homes (c) IRIN Photo/Juliette Rousselot

Coordinating Energy Access in Emergencies: The Nepal Earthquake

February 23, 2016

This article describes the efforts of the SAFE Working Group to coordinate energy-related response activities in the aftermath of the massive earthquake that devastated Nepal in 2015, and introduces a case study that describes its outcomes. Through this coordination effort, over 86,147 energy products were delivered to earthquake survivors in 2015, including including solar lights, lights + chargers, cookstoves, power systems, and solar home systems. An additional 72,000 are expected to be delivered in 2016.

Read More

How to Power a Refugee Camp

By: Jessica Bishopp, How We Get to Next
February 19, 2016

Filmmaker, Interaction Designer & Producer Jessica Bishopp interviews Owen Grafham and Glada Lahn of Chatham House on powering refugee camps as part of How We Get To Next’s "Power Up" month, looking at the future of energy throughout February 2016.

Read More

AIDF Africa Summit 2016

February 9, 2016

The inaugural Aid & International Development Forum (AIDF) Africa Summit was held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on 2-3 February 2016 at the United Nations Conference Centre. The two day summit attracted more than 300 participants representing NGOs, UN agencies, donors, governments and the private sector. The topics discussed included mobile innovations, procurement, finance, humanitarian logistics, health and WASH, strategic partnerships, emergency communications, safety of aid workers and improving livelihoods of displaced people

Read More

WFP Works with Women to Reach Zero Hunger: Empowerment is the Key! (c) WFP/Ala Kheir 2015

Working with Women to Reach Zero Hunger: Empowerment is the Key!

By Kawinzi Muiu, Director of the Gender Office, World Food Programme
January 11, 2016

Women and girls play an essential role in defeating hunger. It is a fact that over 60% of the world’s hungry people are women. Added to that, in the countries where WFP operates, women are usually responsible for both their own and their family’s health and food security. When women are disempowered or hungry, it has a resounding impact on their communities and society as a whole. Kawinzi Muiu, Director of the Gender Office at the World Food Progamme, discusses the vital importance of empowering women and girls in the effort to reach zero hunger worldwide and describes the efforts of WFP's SAFE initiative to come up with practical solutions to the dangers associated with collecting and using firewood for cooking.

Read More

Filippo Grande, High Commissioner for Refugees at UNHCR (c) UNHCR

Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves CEO Radha Muthiah Welcomes New UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi

January 11, 2016

Radha Muthiah, CEO of the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves, welcomes the Filippo Grandi, the newly appointed High Commissioner for Refugees at UNHCR, and looks forward to continuing to collaborate on increasing access to cookstoves and fuels for refugee households.

Read More

Saving Lives, Reducing Costs: Moving Energy Initiative Launches Flagship Report (c) Aris Messinis/AFP/Getty Images

Heat, Light and Power for Refugees: Saving Lives, Reducing Costs

The Moving Energy Initiative Launches its Flagship Report
November 17, 2015

The Moving Energy Initiative, a consortium of organizations seeking to meet the energy needs of refugees and internally displaced people, has released its first report, which focuses on the energy needs and use of refugees and displaced people worldwide, and presents the first ever estimates of the volume and costs of energy used in situations of forced displacement worldwide. The evidence strongly suggests the need for an overhaul in the way that energy is managed within the humanitarian sector and shows how new approaches could benefit refugees and displaced people, host country communities and the environment.

Read More

Demonstration of blazing tube use in Saag-Nionigo camp (c) UNHCR 2015

Project Highlight: Blazing Tube Solar Cookers in Burkina Faso

October 16, 2015

Since 2012, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and its partners - Caritas Burkina Faso (OCADES) and HELP - have been working to introduce renewable energy for cooking into Saag-Nioniogo, Mentao, and Goudoubo refugee camps in Burkina Faso. One solar-powered cooker, the Blazing Tube, has met with considerable success among the Malian refugees in the camps.

Read More

Ensuring Safe Access to Energy for All

Dmitra Newsletter, Issue 27
September 30, 2015

Almost three billion people globally rely on wood, coal, charcoal or animal waste as sources of fuel for cooking and heating. Collecting fuels – fuelwood in particular – is often women and girls’responsibility and can be arduous and dangerous task. Unsustainable harvesting of the scarce wood resources further degrades the environment. In this article, FAO discusses how it has addressed these challenges through SAFE activities in South Sudan, sharing best practices and lessons learned.

Read More

Corinne on Safety of Crisis Affected Populations panel at AIDF Summit 2015 (c)

AIDF Global Disaster Relief Summit 2015

September 29, 2015

SAFE Working Group members the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves and International Lifeline Fund participated in the "Safety of Crisis-Affected Populations" panel at AIDF's 2015 Global Disaster Relief Summit, emphasizing energy as an area that is currently missing among the complex elements being addressed in refugee camps.

Read More

Q&A with Corinne Hart of the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves

WASH Plus Weekly, Issue 206: Focus on Cookstoves for Displaced Populations
September 11, 2015

WASH Plus Weekly interviews Corinne Hart, Director of the Gender and Humanitarian Programs at the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves, about cookstoves for refugees and displaced persons.

Read More

Gender and Emergency Assistance in Practice

By: Anna Gorter, Vice Versa
September 3, 2015

Vice Versa magazine interviews the World Food Programme about addressing the needs of women in crisis situations, with reference to WFP's SAFE program in Darfur, where women are learning to produce fuel-efficient stoves.

Read More

2015 SAFE Workshop Group Photo (c)

Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves and UN Refugee Agency Host Training on Energy Access in Humanitarian Settings

August 12, 2015

The Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) held their second annual Safe Access to Fuel and Energy (SAFE) Humanitarian Training in Kampala, Uganda on July 27-30 2015, welcoming more than 90 participants from 25 countries.

Read More

Millions of Refugees Need Access to Cleaner, More Efficient Cookstoves and Fuels

By: Radha Muthiah, Alexander Aleinikoff
June 20, 2015

More than 59 million people are currently displaced from their homes due to conflict, war, and disaster. They leave home with few possessions, and often, in fear of their lives. The Safe Access for Fuel & Energy (SAFE) Humanitarian Working Group is developing and implementing comprehensive programs in refugee camps that reduce fuel usage and emissions by improving access to cleaner and more fuel-efficient cookstoves and renewable energy products such as solar lanterns and solar home systems. What we need now is for all of you to join us in this effort.

Read More

Biogas Digester Gives Renewable Fuel to Gaza Families

By: American Near East Refugee Aid (ANERA)
June 18, 2015

15 biogas production units have been distributed to needy rural households in Gaza, and 13 to marginalized Bedouin families in northern West Bank. This is the latest of ANERA’s many environmental projects and economic development initiatives.

Read More

Oxfam: Improved Cookstoves and a Holistic Approach to Food Security for Displaced

By: Oxfam
June 17, 2015

Lack of fuel to cook food was one of the greatest challenges facing the people housed at the United Nations refugee camp in Juba, South Sudan until earlier this year. To overcome this life-threatening problem, Oxfam started providing fuel efficient stoves, charcoal and commodity vouchers to inhabitants of the camp in February 2014 with support from the European Commission for Humanitarian Aid (ECHO).

Read More

Babington Technology, Inc. Donates Advanced Biofuel Stoves to Project Gaia, Inc. for Testing in Horn of Africa

Collaboration with Government of Ethiopia, UNHCR, and Horn of Africa Regional Environment Centre and Network (HoA-REC&N) will place stoves in refugee camps and urban settings
May 18, 2015

Babington Technology announced today its donation of almost $100,000 worth of especially adapted field feeding equipment to Project Gaia, Inc. for testing in refugee camp and urban commercial and institutional settings in Ethiopia.

Read More

Safer Cooking for Rwandan Refugees

Advocacy by Alliance & UNHCR Drives Fuel Provision Policy Change
December 11, 2014

Advocacy efforts by SAFE practitioners change a refugee fuel policy in Rwanda.

Read More

 (c) EUEI PDF Ina de Visser

Biomass Sector Planning for Humanitarian Settings

December 9, 2014

For the 51.2 million displaced people affected by conflict, war or natural disaster, lack of access to biomass is life-threatening. With the aim to improve the governing structures in biomass energy and ensuring its sustainable use, the EU Energy Initiative – Partnership Dialogue Facility (EUEI PDF) and GIZ’s Poverty-oriented Basic Energy Services (HERA) published the Biomass Energy Sector Planning Guide, addressed to stakeholders in government institutions, NGOs and donors active in energy sector.

Read More

Lights for Refugees in Rwanda

October 21, 2014

Great Lakes Energy and Global BrightLight Foundation have put together a documentary on how each one of the 3,700 households in the Kiziba refugee camp in Rwanda were given a Sun King Pro solar lamp, and the impact that light has had on their lives.

Read More

UNOPS in Coordination with UNHCR Begins Distribution of Solar-powered Lamps to Internally Displaced Families in Iraq

September 4, 2014

In an effort to increase the safety of vulnerable displaced families in Iraq, the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) began distribution of solar-powered lamps and mobile phone charging kits in collaboration with the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq.

Read More

SAFE Steering Committee furthers MDG 8

Developing a global partnership to improve access to energy for cooking, lighting, heating, and powering
August 18, 2014

The Safe Access to Fuel and Energy (SAFE) Steering Committee exemplifies Millennium Development Goal 8, “Develop a Global Partnership for Development.”

Read More

Corinne Hart presents on major types of cookstove technologies and fuels (c)

Training on Safe Access to Fuels and Energy (SAFE) in Humanitarian Settings Held in Kigali, Rwanda

June 21, 2014

The Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves, the Women’s Refugee Commission (WRC), and the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) held a training from June 16-20 in Kigali, Rwanda on Safe Access to Fuels and Energy (SAFE) in humanitarian settings.

Read More